What is a firewall and how does a firewall protect the network?

Today, every organization uses Firewall in its network to secure its network and that is why in today’s post we will know what is Firewall and how does Firewall protects the network? What are the types of Firewall?

What is a firewall and how does a firewall protect the network?

Simply put, a firewall is a network security system that monitors and controls incoming and outgoing traffic based on a set of user-defined rules.

In general, the purpose of a firewall is to reduce or eliminate the occurrence of unwanted network communications, while allowing all legitimate communications to flow freely. In most server infrastructures, firewalls provide an essential layer of security that, combined with other measures, prevent attackers from maliciously accessing your servers.

For the security of the network, it is very important to use a firewall in the network. Firewall which literally means Fire+wall can limit the damage to your network like we have seen in an arson, here an arson attack can mean the cause of a cyber attack.

How do Firewalls Work?

Firewalls establish a barrier between secure and controlled networks, whether they are trusted or untrusted, like the Internet. Using a wall of code, a firewall works to isolate your computer from Internet packets while inspecting the data packet as it arrives on either side of the firewall. Then, it determines where it should be passed or blocked.

Incoming traffic is analyzed based on Preset Rules and carefully filtered from Unsecured or Malicious sources to prevent any attack. Although they sound complicated, they are relatively easy to install and set up, depending on which firewall software you decide to use.

While filtering packets sent from malicious sources, the firewall is responsible to check the source and destination IP addresses on all the packets.

How does a firewall protect Data?

By placing protective filters around your network and devices, a firewall can help prevent various security risks. These include the following things:

Large corporations often have very complex firewalls to protect their extensive networks.

On the outbound side, firewalls are configured to prevent employees from sending certain types of emails or transmitting sensitive data outside the network.

On the inbound side, firewalls can be programmed to block access to certain websites (such as social networking sites).

Additionally, firewalls can prevent external computers from accessing computers inside the network.

A company may choose to designate a single computer on the network for file sharing and all other computers may be restricted.

Malware, malicious software is the primary threat to your computer.
Viruses are often the first type of malware that comes to mind. A virus can be transmitted to your computer via email or the Internet and can quickly cause great damage to your files. A firewall protects your network from all these things to your computer.

What are the types of Firewall?

There are two types of firewall software and hardware. A software version of the firewall is installed on the computer to regulate the port number and traffic through the application. A hardware version of the firewall is configured between the public network and the private network’s gateway. In this post, we discuss the 5 basic types of network firewalls:

Packet filtering

Packet filtering or stateless firewalls work by inspecting individual packets in isolation. As such, they are unaware of the connection state and can only allow or deny packets based on individual packet headers.

Stateful firewalls

Stateful firewalls can determine the connection status of packets, which makes them more flexible than stateless firewalls. They work by collecting associated packets until the connection state can be determined before any firewall rules can be applied to the traffic.

Application firewalls

Application firewalls go a step further by analyzing the data being transmitted, which allows network traffic to be matched against firewall rules that are specific to individual services or applications. These are also known as proxy-based firewalls. Software firewalls are available on all modern operating systems and can also be provided by hardware firewall devices such as routers or firewall equipment.

Next-generation firewall

Next-generation firewalls (NGFW) use traditional firewall technology and combine it with other functionality, such as encrypted traffic inspection, intrusion prevention systems, cloud-delivered threat intelligence, antivirus software, and more.

These block modern threats such as advanced malware and application-layer attacks and can detect them within seconds, allowing the user to take swift action and avoid as much damage as possible.

Proxy firewall

A proxy firewall is a gateway for a specific application from one network to another network. These provide additional functionality, such as content caching and security because they prevent connections from outside the network.

Proxy firewalls filter traffic to the application as it acts as an intermediary between the two end systems. One advantage of using proxy firewalls is that any machines outside the network being protected can only collect specific information about the network as they are never directly connected to it.