Firewalls

Firewalls - Protection Worth Every Penny

Firewalls are protection for your computer from internet attacks, hackers and crackers. It also protects against viruses and worms. There are two kinds of firewalls - a software application firewall and an external dedicated hub firewall. Both firewalls work well although the external dedicated hub version has the added advantage of being another barrier through which hackers and viruses must past - and the majority are unable to do so.

Software firewalls are applications such as "Zone Alarm" that must be added to your computer. Once operational these firewalls will scan all incoming messages and all attempts to remotely access your computer. If the message or computer trying to get in is suspicious the firewall will block it and/or prompt you to find out what it should do with it. Firewalls allow you to set the parameters for what is good and bad and also allows to you to select the level of access you want outside computers to have to your own. Some firewalls are so effective that they will not even allow networked computers to share files unless they are disabled.

The external dedicated hub firewall is basically a router. Since the router does not have the same address as your computer all attempts to gain entry into your computer must pass through the router and if you have not allowed access to those addresses on your computer then those outside attempts to access your computer will be denied. Routers are probably the most effective firewalls to have. Even if you do not have a network at home, getting a router will go a long way toward securing your internet connection and your files.

If you do not have internet access then you probably do not need to worry about having a firewall, however, the minute you connect to the internet it is imperative to protect yourself. Your internet connection is like an open doorway onto the computer world - without any kind of security, you and your computer are vulnerable to all kinds of unwanted attacks. You may think that you have nothing worth stealing from your computer - but there is enough personal information there that can be used by thieves to commit fraud and identity theft. So, if you want to surf safely then you must get some form of firewall.

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