Every one of us knows that startups and small businesses are at their peak, and they are all contributing a lot to the economy. But unfortunately, even startups are at risk too. Because of their smaller budgets, they are not able to implement the best firewalls. Firewalls are the first line of Defense and are installed in both physical and virtual forms. Firewalls prevent an unauthorized user from accessing files and documents. Small businesses are vulnerable to cyberattacks because they lack training for all of their employees and have a weaker IT department. This is the main reason why startups are more susceptible to cyberattacks.
In this article, we will learn what types of firewalls are there and which firewalls are best for small businesses.
Why are firewalls necessary for small businesses?
Most businesses turn themselves off when they face financial losses or cyberattacks. A cyberattack ruins the reputation of the company, and it affects the data and other assets of the company. This is why securing a business from cyber threats has become essential. To avoid these threats, it is essential for the business to install an antivirus solution and firewall. Besides, you can give training to the employees by giving them knowledge about the types of cyber threats that happen frequently. And can alarm them from using black hat activities. In addition to this, make your employees smarter so that they can recognize phishing attempts and avoid downloading malicious websites.
All the phishing attacks and spamming can be eliminated by installing the best firewall for businesses. Let’s learn which kinds of firewalls are available on the market.
Types of Firewalls
There are five main types of firewalls and those are:
- Packet filtering firewall
These types of firewalls are also known as stateless inspection firewalls. In this kind of firewall, filtering is done at the network layer by scanning the individual packets sent across the network.
- Stateful inspection firewall
Stateful inspection firewalls are a little more advanced than packet filtering firewalls, as they do not need approval again and again for tracking and managing the data packets. They keep all records of current and previous connections.
- Circuit level gateway
This kind of firewall helps eliminate user datagram protocols (UDPs) and transmission control protocols (TCPs). Besides, it keeps tracking the activities of all the data packets across the whole environment.
- Next- generation Firewall
A next-generation firewall is the most sophisticated kind of firewall, which is made up of multiple layers and protects a network from threats. It includes all the features of a basic firewall. Such advanced features help in detecting malware and other complicated threats.
- Proxy service firewall
These are also known as application-layer gateway firewalls, filter packets, and read application protocols. They provide sophisticated protection at all layers. Moreover, with a proxy firewall, one can manage the whole network traffic.
Which features to look for in a firewall?
Every kind of firewall has a different set of features, and it becomes necessary for the organization to first define what their requirements and needs are. Accordingly, businesses can decide which firewall they should choose. Some of the major features to look at are:
- Antivirus support: A firewall with an antivirus feature helps businesses run more smoothly, as there are fewer or negligible chances for cybercriminals to steal business information.
- Filtering: Web filtering features prevent employees from visiting harmful sites during and after working hours. The best firewall automatically blocks malicious websites.
- Connection speed: A firewall should have good speed, which means that it should not affect the data transfer.
- VPN support: hybrid and remote culture has become a trend these days, and therefore, it becomes necessary to install a firewall that has the capability to support remote work so that employees can access it from anywhere and at any time.
- Easy to use: Deploying an easy-to-use firewall which is easy to use reduces the cost of training for organizations.
I hope you do not have any queries regarding the features to look for in a firewall. Now, we will discuss some of the major firewalls that include these kinds of features.
Top firewalls to be used in small businesses
There are a number of options available to companies these days, and therefore, in this article, we will mention several top firewalls that are regarded as the best among all startups. These firewalls may vary in size, price, and type.
Sophos XG series is a wholesome solution for small businesses as it offers advanced protection against malware, spyware, ransomware, web filtering, and many more kinds of threats. Sophos XG firewalls are easy to use and implement. Thus, it is an ideal choice for businesses to choose Sophos Firewall. Besides, it also detects threats in real-time. One can deploy Sophos as a cloud solution or as hardware.
Pros of the Sophos Firewall:
- Easy to use.
- Available at a reasonable cost.
- Manage traffic through content filtering.
Cons of the Sophos Firewall:
- Does not support sophisticated routing.
- GUI is not friendly.
- Palo Alto Networks PA- 400 Series
The Palo Alto PA 400 series is specifically designed for small businesses. It keeps on detecting suspicious files, and it also blocks those files. Moreover, it also provides extra security for the network from zero-day threats. One can buy the Palo Alto Network PA 400 series from a trusted Palo Alto network firewall vendor. Certain pros and cons of Palo Alto Networks include:
Pros of PA networks:
- Machine learning capabilities.
- Easy to deploy.
- Automatic workflows.
Cons of PA networks:
- Beneficial to the larger networks.
- Fortinet Forti Gate
Fortinet Forti Gate firewalls are the next generation of firewalls and are used by many small businesses. These kinds of firewalls are cost-effective, easy to deploy, and deliver exceptional performance. Some of the entry-level Fortinet Forti Gate firewalls are 40F, 70F, 80F, and 60F; these are regarded as the best series for small businesses. And if you are looking to protect your network from advanced threats, the Fortinet 80F series is the best. You can buy this from any reliable Fortinet Forti Gate vendor who will give you this at a modest price.
Pros of Fortinet Forti Gate are:
- Easy to use.
- Secure connections.
Cons of Fortinet Forti Gate are:
- It’s necessary to change the hardware box when upgrading.
- WatchGuard Firebox
WatchGuard Firebox provides protection to all kinds of businesses. It is also available at a reasonable cost. Besides, it secures an environment from harmful threats by using various machine learning and AI technologies. IPS, URL filtering, antispam, and DLP are certain features that are available in the WatchGuard Firewall. Some popular models of WatchGuard Firebox are the M290 and M390 models, which are specially developed for securing small business networks.
Pros of the WatchGuard Firebox are:
- Easy to deploy.
- detects spam easily.
- Worth of money.
Cons of the WatchGuard Firebox are:
- Needs more improvement.
Choosing the correct security options is very important for businesses, as cybercriminals know better how small businesses spend less on everything, including cybersecurity. This reason becomes a chance for them to attack the business data and demand a ransom, which will affect a business a lot, and this not only leads businesses to face a financial loss but also harms their reputation. Perhaps a business should install a firewall. We have discussed all the features and kinds of firewalls that remain ahead of cyber threats.
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