Internet Firewalls That Hold Back Invaders

Written By: Stacey Misope

Internet Firewalls – Are These Deterrents As Effective As We Presume?

If someone sold you a filter for your furnace and said it can trap all dust particles and other pollutants forever, would you believe it? Odds are you know better. I mean, how can a filter trap each and every particle from traveling from your furnace up through your ductwork and into your room? After a certain amount of time and as the filter clogs, the filter looses strength. If you’re smart, you’ll periodically change that filter to get maximum coverage with the latest technology. A computer firewall operates in pretty much the same manner. While the majority of firewalls can block ordinary spam and viruses from getting through, these nasty infiltrators sometimes find ways to get into your system and shimmy past your firewall.

So, are firewalls all they’re talked up to be? Yes, firewalls offer a protection that you certainly don’t want to be without. After all, would you be so foolish as to run through a wild storm without protection? Hopefully, you know better. You don’t want so much debris hitting your computer that it can’t recover or ends up stealing your private information. Firewalls offer the kind of protection that you need to ward off these mutating infiltrators. However, you have to make a conscious effort to upgrade your firewall frequently since it too must upgrade itself.

The best way to protect your computer from infiltrators is to build several tough layers between your system and the invader. A firewall works in several layers arranged like a maze to throw off invaders and tear them apart. These layers and tunnels work similar to how a sound wave is broken apart by loosing momentum and speed. As viruses change after learning the language of a firewall, the firewall has to work even harder to keep up with these changes. That is why upgrades are so essential to your system’s protection.

Operating a computer that’s connecting to another system and the Internet runs the risk of coming across encrypted messages with harmful or intrusive intentions. The thought of not having a firewall on your computer is similar to the action of running through a front line battle without armor – You just don’t want to partake in that kind of foolish risk. A savvy Internet user relies on a firewall that has several protective layers: packet filtering, circuit relay and application gateway. Basically what this boils down to is prior to whatever wants to comes in must first go through a firewall and then whatever wants to go out must again first pass through a firewall. If information or systems operate separate of a firewall, the data and program is fully exposed to whatever elements come its way. To learn more about firewall layers, visit www.pc-help.org.

One multi-layered firewall that is found on nearly every window system is Windows Firewall. This firewall blocks unsolicited messages, alerts you of intruders and automatically updates. The top firewalls for home computers according to PC World Online include:

Sygate Personal Firewall, VisNetic Firewall, Kerio Personal Firewall, Norton Internet Security for Macintosh, ZoneAlarm Free, McAfee Personal Firewall Plus, BlackIce PC Protection, and Tiny Personal Firewall.

While some firewalls are free, others are shareware or “buy only”. Since deterrents that destroy information, rob our personal identity and basically intrude and track our movement without permission are as big of a threat as ever, always install the latest version of the best firewall for your hardware and software.

About The Author

Copyright 2005 Stacey Misope. All rights reserved.

Stacey Misope is the webmaster and operator for Firewall Club which is a leading on-line resource for the latest firewall information on the internet. For more details please visit her archive of articles: http://www.firewallclub.com/

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