Imagine your computer network is a castle on a hill. It has a vigilant king who knows best practices to keep his fort secure (IT maintenance) and a garrison of well-trained guards (anti-virus). Yet, with no moats or battlements (a firewall), waves upon waves of enemies can constantly besiege the keep.
What is a firewall?
In addition to anti-virus software, every business needs a firewall. A firewall is software that creates a digital curtain monitoring all incoming and outgoing traffic to a network. It will block or allow data packets depending on the rules and monitor for any malicious attempts to connect to the network.
A firewall does have some flaws. If a virus is disguised as something else, like an email, a firewall may not be able to detect it as it will look like regular network traffic. You can make the firewall more vigilant, but that may then impact normal business operations.
What features does a good firewall have?
There are several features that a good firewall will have.
1. Robust defence system with high-bit encryption. A firewall is only as good as its foundation, and it is essential that whatever method you use has an exceptional security level.
2. Machine AI learning to understand what regular traffic is and what is not. By using the power of deep learning, your network firewall should slowly come to recognise normal traffic and then alert IT management when suspicious activity is detected.
3. Threat management. It is one thing to recognise a threat, but another to instantly act on it. The firewall should be able to automatically isolate systems that have been compromised and implement a new firewall to defend against any new intrusions.
4. 100% Application Visibility. A surprisingly rare but useful firewall feature is a monitoring window into all your network traffic. You should be able to see every program sending data at the click of a button, giving you the intelligence to tackle further problems.
5. Integration for remote workers. In our post-COVID-19 world, many more workers are dialling in from home. An enterprise firewall system will not only protect your servers but the team members who are working remotely.
For as good as a firewall is, it needs to work with a competent suite of other security features, such as IT maintenance, backups, and anti-virus. Like the castle on the hill fable we spun at the beginning of the article, without these features, a network will be critically undefended.
Fortunately, there is already a system designed with businesses like yours in mind. Sophos firewalls have all the features listed above and are entirely scalable to the size of the enterprise, without compromise.
If you want to make sure that your system is fully protected, get in touch with TechTidy Consulting for a chat.