Getting the Best Firewall Protection...Why you need it.

Getting the best firewall protection is your first and last line of defense in internet security. Firewall protection is fundamental to personal computer security. Without a firewall, your computer is operating with an "open door" policy. Bank account information, passwords, credit card numbers, virtually any sensitive information on your computer becomes available to hackers. Hackers can get in, take what they want, and even leave one of their own "back doors" in place for ongoing access to your computer whenever they like.

Simply put, the firewall is the only way to block outside access to your computer. Virus and spy-ware protection does not secure your computer against direct hacker access. Relying on Antivirus/Antispyware is like chasing burglars out of your house instead of putting a deadbolt on every door. The goal is to not let them inside at all. Also, anti-virus/anti-spyware software is only as good as the latest virus definitions. Visit Zone Alarm for one of the best firewall software or for free firewall check out Free Comodo firewall.

The best firewall protection can be implemented in both hardware and software or a combination of both. All messages entering or leaving an intranet can pass through this secure barrier, which examines each message and blocks those that do not meet specified security criteria.

A home hardware router with a built-in firewall provide inbound protection, but do not protect you against unauthorized outbound communications or dangerous behavior at the OS-level. A firewall that provides outbound protection is also highly recommended.

Combining, a router's firewall and a PC firewall provide multiple layers of protection that a router firewall cannot provide by itself. And only a PC firewall can protect your Internet-connected laptop on the road.

The Windows XP SP2 firewall does not protect you against unauthorized outbound communications or dangerous behavior at the operating system level. Neither does Windows Vista give the best firewall protection to you by default from unauthorized outbound transmissions. This protection must be specifically configured, and the panels for configuring it require significant expertise. Inbound-only firewalls included in Windows Firewall, can’t stop all these threats. But, an outbound and OS-level firewall can stop them.

To get the best firewall protection, it must do the following:

  1. Automatically detects and blocks intrusions and other highly suspicious or damaging behaviors on your computer, such as requests by unknown sources to access to your computer.
  2. Prevents intrusions in the first place by hiding your computer’s network ports from open view—in other words, hiding them from connections that your computer does not initiate. But to keep all hackers out, a firewall must do even more.

So the best firewall also does the following:

  • It must stop unauthorized access before it starts. Hacker programs called “port scanners” rapidly scan all the ports to your computer to find an opening to your computer. Once in, these programs typically run other programs and downloads that can steal your credit card number and other information, gather data to steal your identity, damage your system, and more. This kind of unauthorized access is exactly what a firewall is designed to stop.
  • It must keep all hackers out. Another way that hackers get into your computer is through a phenomenon called “security holes.” Security holes are the unwatched “back doors,” unintentionally created as software is developed. Many of these vulnerabilities are unrelated to viruses and spyware, which is why antivirus and antispyware software alone will not protect you. The trouble is that hackers can get around a basic inbound firewall by exploiting security holes you didn’t even know were there.
  • It must catch intruders even if they sneak past the firewall. Security holes can allow hackers to get by firewalls that only have inbound protection. That means that your valuable information could then be transmitted to the hacker—unless your firewall was capable of automatically blocking unauthorized outbound communications

For further in-depth discussion on firewall security, visit the following pages.

Firewall Softwares
Internet Security Software
Internet Security Review
Internet Security Information and Alerts
Laptop Security

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