Why Does Your Network Need a Secure Firewall?

Is your network secure enough?

picture of computers being protected by a firewall

 

Only the most cynical of people truly believes that we can trust no one; that the world is out to get us; and that everyone from distant strangers to our closest friends are potential threats. That is, of course, untrue.

However, on the World Wide Web, there’s some truth to this alarmist claim. With several billion users with just a click-of-a-mouse away from your network, odds are extremely high that someone, who when given the chance, would take advantage of your business.

The internet has in fact become the battlefield of the latest arms race. Business owners around the world struggle to protect the integrity of their network infrastructure while attackers attempt to breach their defenses. Businesses that fail to keep up leave themselves open to malicious attacks. Not a week goes by without hearing on the news about a successful attack on a major organization which might have that thought that its defensive walls were strong enough to repel intruders.

As a business owner, you should know that an industrial-strength firewall is your first and best line of defense. Here are few facts you should know about the importance of firewalls.

What is a firewall?
Essentially, a firewall acts as the gateway between your private network and the Internet at large. You can consider your network, be it a single computer or a large array of servers and workstations, as your home and your front door is the firewall. Any person coming in or going out must pass through the door, but only you hold the key.

What if I operate without an adequate firewall?
The consequences of failing to protect your business network can be dire. By allowing unfettered access to your network you may:

Lose vital data: every piece of data you hold within your network can be deleted, stolen, or corrupted by malicious users. Without adequate protection, you run the risk of exposing vital and sensitive data to competitors and hackers alike.
Suffer damaging attacks: while you may expect your greatest threat to come from attackers who wish to steal your data for their own purposes, many businesses come under attack from hackers who have no other motivation than mischief. DoS (denial of service) attacks are a common way to attack a network, overloading your servers and preventing customers from accessing your website (preventing you and your staff from using the network).

Harm your reputation: the previous threats will tarnish your own and your business reputation. For every customer whose sensitive data is stolen and for every user who attempts to visit your website and reaches an error page instead, you lose some of your popularity. Quite apart from the very real threats of exposing your network to the world, one of the greatest dangers is losing face.

What can I do to protect my business?
If you run a business, it’s your responsibility to protect yourself, your staff, and most importantly, your customers. An industrial-strength hardware firewall is without doubt the best defensive weapon you have in your arsenal to maintain the safety of your network.