The internet is a vast and interconnected web that allows us to communicate, share, and collaborate on a global scale. However, this openness also exposes our systems and devices to a multitude of threats. To safeguard against these threats, we employ a variety of security measures, and one of the most formidable among them is the hardware firewall.
Whether you’re a home user looking to protect your personal devices or a business owner safeguarding a network of computers, understanding what a hardware firewall is and how it works is essential.
What is a Hardware Firewall?
A hardware firewall, otherwise known as a physical firewall, is an appliance that establishes a network boundary. It’s a set of appliances or devices that are used in defending the computer network. A hardware firewall is a device that connects a computer network to an external internet and acts as a barrier that protects the computer network from hacks or users that are not authorized to access the network.
A hardware firewall aids the cybersecurity of the computer network by filtering the traffic that gets through, which was established based on security policy, users profile, and rules. The boundary set, prevents against unauthorized access, inspects all inbound and outbound network traffic, and manifests controls and security policies.
How Does a Hardware Firewall Work?
A hardware firewall is designed to protect an organization’s network by enforcing a boundary. It is located directly behind the router and can be configured to analyze the traffic to filter specific threats when it pass through the device. It acts like a digital filter to purify the traffic that goes into the computer network.
Normally a user would connect a network cable directly to a computer or server. But with a hardware firewall, the cable is connected to a firewall physical device first. This allow hardware firewall to serve as a protective barrier between the internet and the server.
A hardware firewall offers some advantages:
- Control the incoming traffic entering your server.
- Apply specific rules for all traffic.
- Free up server resources such as memory and processing power.
The simplest form of firewall is called packet filter. When a traffic enters within a firewall network, it undergoes security audit, and at times various sets of permissions are applied to it. Using the information the traffic carries such as source and location, firewall use this to decide whether the traffic can bring harms to the system or not.
Modern hardware firewalls can check both inbound and outbound traffic. As much as it blocks certain traffic from getting into the network, it also stops specific types of traffic from exiting the network with the same filtering mechanism. This aids the computer network from being exposed to hacks, leaks, and exploitation to other computer as well.
Why Do You Need a Hardware Firewall?
A hardware firewall functions as a dedicated device positioned between your network and the internet. Its primary role involves the continuous monitoring and filtration of all incoming and outgoing network traffic, effectively blocking any traffic that is identified as malicious or undesirable.
The necessity for implementing hardware firewalls arises from several significant reasons:
- Network Security: A primary purpose is to fortify your network against unauthorized access. Hardware firewalls are customizable to restrict traffic originating from specific IP addresses, ports, or applications. This feature serves as a deterrent against potential intruders attempting to breach your network’s defenses, thereby safeguarding your data and protecting your devices from cyber threats.
- Malware and Virus Protection: Hardware firewalls are also instrumental in shielding your network from the infiltration of malware and viruses. By effectively blocking these harmful entities from entering your network, hardware firewalls play a vital role in preserving the integrity of your network devices and the confidentiality of your data.
- Traffic Management: Hardware firewalls grant you control over the flow of traffic within your network. This control allows you to regulate the type and volume of data passing through your network, thereby enabling you to manage bandwidth usage, restrict specific types of traffic, or prioritize certain types of data.
Why Is a Hardware Firewall Better?
A hardware firewall are commonly regarded as superior to a software firewall for a variety of compelling reasons, which can address questions about their advantages:
- Enhanced Performance: Hardware firewalls are purpose-built devices tailored to efficiently manage the substantial flow of network traffic. In contrast, software firewalls, which operate on individual devices, can potentially impede performance due to their resource demands.
- Heightened Security: Hardware firewalls offer a higher level of security compared to software firewalls. This increased security arises from their inherent difficulty to bypass. Software firewalls, being reliant on the host device, can be compromised, disabled, or improperly configured. Hardware firewalls, as separate devices, provide a stronger security barrier that is less vulnerable to tampering.
- Centralized Management: Hardware firewalls can be managed centrally, simplifying the process of configuration and updates. In contrast, software firewalls necessitate individualized setup and maintenance on each device, which can be time-consuming and less efficient, especially in larger network environments.
- Expanded Feature Set: Hardware firewalls typically offer a broader spectrum of features when compared to software firewalls. These features often encompass advanced functionalities such as intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDS/IPS), support for Virtual Private Network (VPN), and content filtering. This extensive feature set bolsters their capabilities and versatility in network security.
Fortinet: Hardware Firewall Network Security Solutions
There are different ranges of firewall devices to choose from depending on the specs you require. But Fortinet hardware firewall is the best of all.
Fortinet hardware firewall caters to SMBs, big organizations, and service providers alike is a high-performing NGFW device with an in-built SD-WAN capability; it is also encrypted with IPSEC tunnels and many other options to deploy. The Fortinet core features are:
- IT security inspection and offloading of both encryption and decryption are accelerated
- Next-gen synergistic processing unit processors power it for high speed
- It processes high-volume data packets with an extraordinarily low tolerance for delay.
- Forcible prevention based on irregularity checks
- It consolidates and controls the ecosystem.
The unique selling proposition of the Fortinet is the Fortinet security fabric. With mechanisms such as zero-trust network access, cloud security, and AI-driven detection, it provides protection.
Get Secure with a Hardware Firewall from Fortinet
The Fortinet NGFW offers an incorporated SD-WAN networking and security in one device. It enhances the performance of the multi-cloud application by ensuring that the organization would be able to gain access to all applications in the cloud. The Fortinet SD-WAN is centrally managed from a central location through a management display console, providing see-through visibility across the network.
It offers both networking and security in the same solution at a less expensive rate. The Fortinet SD-WAN aids enterprises to develop above the archaic MPLS services and open their network to direct internet access.
Protect your valuable digital assets now with Spectrum Edge, a reliable hardware firewall provider that offers top-notch security solutions crafted specifically for your needs. Act swiftly and secure your boundaries today, because in this digital age, the cost of inaction would be far too great.