Firewalls have long been recognised as one of the most vital components of a business’s IT security infrastructure, with their importance becoming even more as the modern and digital world continues to adopt new advances in technology. In response to these rapid developments, firewall security is also evolving in functionality and features to stay ahead of emerging threats. While it may seem like a firewall solution is exclusive to established businesses and large financial institutions, the fact that cybercriminals are also targeting SMBs means it is necessary for any organisation with a network, regardless of their size. Read on as we outline the key considerations when choosing a firewall solution for your business.
A Brief Refresher on Firewalls
A firewall is a network security system akin to a gated border that manages and restricts incoming and outgoing data traffic within an organisation’s network based on a set of security rules. This solution blocks unauthorised and potential threats from entering the network system and essentially serves as its first line of defence.
Firewalls receive incoming traffic deemed acceptable or safe according to its configuration, such as trusted IP addresses and other sources, while keeping out everything that does not conform to the predetermined rules. These rules verify the validity of traffic according to key aspects of the data packets, like their contents, source, destination, and so on.
Thus, firewalls are primarily used for IT security by blocking malicious traffic and preventing sensitive information from being sent out of the network towards unauthorised destinations. However, firewall solutions can also serve other purposes, such as content filtering, wherein they are configured to prevent users from accessing certain content.
5 Tips for Choosing a Business Firewall
Businesses must continuously improve their cybersecurity in response to the ever-shifting threat landscape, with upgrading firewall security being the first step towards keeping up with changing organisational needs. Below are eight practices to keep in mind when making such an upgrade:
1. Consider application visibility and control
Firewalls were initially port-based and had limited control and visibility of the users and applications on a network. In contrast, today’s modern firewalls, or Next Generation Firewalls, are capable of seeing and controlling all applications connected to a network, making it easier to match access to the needs and privileges of users. This means that certain groups can access specific content and are restricted from others, only allowing them the bare minimum to do their jobs.
2. Evaluate security features
Providing better visibility goes hand in hand with denying entry to threats and protecting the network. The latest firewall security can view both applications and classified data within the organisation’s network, putting the system in a better position to block incoming suspicious traffic and malware from causing disastrous data breaches.
3. Check the ease of integration with third-party applications
Most companies have an IT security infrastructure that consists of a variety of security devices and features. When adopting a new firewall system or upgrading to an improved solution, they must work with the existing cybersecurity solutions deployed. Otherwise, it would be difficult to maximise its potential along with those of the other security programs.
4. Assess how it helps streamline the business’s security infrastructure
Although larger corporations may employ a wide range of security products that best fits their needs, most other companies prefer to keep their systems simple to reduce costs and complexities. Modern firewalls can do more than just serve as a network traffic controller; they can also offer added security components that provide the same functionality as other independent solutions. These features include application filtering, spam filtering, anti-virus protection, and more.
5. Ensure remote users are part of the network
With the popularity of remote working and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), IT security systems must be capable of protecting users and devices beyond the physical workplace. More and more employees are now accessing company data and resources from any location, so the chosen firewall solution needs to be effective wherever they may be as well.
In these modern times, a robust and reliable cybersecurity infrastructure is something that no organisation can take for granted. Since firewalls make up a huge part of that setup, choosing the right solution that fits your business’s security policies, network environment, budget, and existing solutions is essential.
Consult with TYPENT today for the best firewall solutions in Singapore to bolster your cybersecurity posture. As the one-stop-shop solution for all your IT outsourcing needs, you can rely on our technology strategies tailor-made to grow with your business. Whether it is basic maintenance scheduling, email security services, network support, server migration, or even complete office relocations, we provide all the IT solutions your office needs. Don’t hesitate to contact us today for more information.