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Three Important Rules for Better Management of Network Firewalls

Network firewalls were indeed one of the greatest innovations when they were introduced and a firewall is one of the integral parts of the security set-up of a network even today. But there has been a growing debate about the effectiveness of the firewalls due to the increase in the number of successful network attacks. Security experts have begun to argue that it is not sufficient to just place a shield around the entire network, i.e. the firewall.

As technology grew, hackers have identified different entry points to a network. So, if you have to guard a network comprehensively, you will have to guard all these access points. They are data, endpoints, applications and the network itself. This segmented approach will not only make the job of security experts easier but will also help them in identifying minor flaws and fixing them for maximum efficiency.

The Three Laws of Network Security

Keeping all the aforementioned rules in mind, we can coin in some ground rules on devising a system to protect your network. Let us compare the network to a car. Cars have the necessity of brakes just like networks need firewalls. But we do know that in spite of  being equipped with brakes, cars are involved in accidents, mostly due to the negligence of the driver. Similarly, even networks are involved in accidents and the user will be at fault most of the times. Based on all these assumptions, here are three rules we can write about network security.

  • If a network should be secure, it should assume that every one of its hosts are potentially hostile
  •  If a host should be secure, it must assume that the network is potentially hostile
  • If an application should be secure, it should assume that all its users are potentially hostile

These rules seem a little paranoid but paranoia is the fuel that drives network security in today’s world. The most important thing, you online privacy, is at stake and even a small slip up may prove to be a costly mistake.

Use a Single and Your Best Firewall

One of the basic mistakes done by security experts is to use more than one firewall. The logic behind this approach is pretty straightforward. More the number of walls, stronger will be the protection. Unfortunately, this logic doesn’t work in the cyber world. More number of weak walls will mean more number of barriers with access points to the hackers. You are better off bringing down all of them and fortifying your main and best firewall as much as you can. Standardization will also help you in keeping track of the maintenance, and the number of places on which you have to keep an eye on will also be reduced.

Integrate All Your Security Solutions

Just like too many firewalls create more problems, too many security systems cause clashes too. Each program will have its own set of protocols and they might interfere with each other creating weak point in the entire system, which the hackers might make use of. Entrust a single system to protect all facets of your network and if needed, add further fortifications. But do not use one system for virus protection and another as a firewall. That approach will definitely create problems sooner or later.

Never Assume Things

Assuming that you are safe is a fatal mistake in the world of network security. Just like hackers don’t rest, even you should not. There have been cases of computers being hacked when they have disabled the firewall for a couple of hours, just to access proxy servers in order to overcome local blackouts. So, it is important that you take even small network security issues seriously and make sure that they are resolved as soon as possible.

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