Nearly one-third of all online attacks and data breaches affected small businesses in 2020.

recent Verizon report saw 28% of SMBs fall victim to network security issues. Rogue websites and malicious software like ransomware cost owners thousands of dollars.

How can your business remain safe from network hacking and cybersecurity threats? By installing a firewall to block unauthorized Internet traffic.

This article outlines 5 reasons why you need a firewall.

We ask what is a firewall then share why they’re essential in a modern network. Read on to discover how they prevent network hacking and keep you and your employees safe online.

What is a Firewall?

A firewall acts as a shield between your internal business network and external traffic like the Internet. It blocks malicious incoming data like malware and helps prevent unauthorized access to your files.

Firewalls come in two flavors: hardware and software.

Software firewalls are applications installed on each of your computers. A hardware firewall is a physical device that sits between your network and Internet gateway.

Both are useful but how exactly does a firewall benefit your business and why do you need one? Here are 5 reasons.

1. Keep Your Data Secure

A firewall’s main purpose is to block the ‘bad guys’ from attacking your internal network. That includes infiltrating your databases and stealing valuable information.

An SMB security trends survey found that 47% of respondents believed data security was their largest threat.

Once a hacker seizes your data they can sell it to the highest bidder. Or encrypt it and charge you to unlock it in a ransomware attack.

A firewall stops these issues at the source by preventing unauthorized access.

2. Prevent Network Hacking

Without a firewall, a hacker can easily enter your internal network and do whatever they wish.

That includes changing or adding logins so if the breach is detected they can re-enter at a later time. It also means they can amend or delete files, systems, and applications.

Keylogger apps record every keystroke you make. They transmit sensitive information like bank details remotely. Without a firewall, all of this remains hidden from you.

Possibly for years.

3. Network Security Privacy

An internal network should offer access to authorized personnel only. Yet without a firewall, everything’s up for grabs!

Private documents, emails, etc. are open to malicious users who enter your network undeterred. If you want to keep your sensitive files safe then you need a firewall.

4. Block Harmful Websites

Firewalls can also detect harmful websites and block access to them.

Employees who try to visit a rogue site with a malicious script won’t be able to. The firewall stops the attempt, keeping them and your entire network safe.

5. Monitoring and Alerting

How do you know if someone is trying to access your network remotely?

A firewall monitors and records all traffic entering and leaving your network. If it spots something suspicious it alerts you to the intrusion.

You can access traffic logs at any time which also helps reduce reoccurring attacks from the same source.

Firewall and Network Security Specialists

Understanding firewalls correctly takes a special skill, especially in the modern workplace.

A wrong firewall application or misconfiguration can devastate your network’s defenses. You need a company dedicated to network security, one with in-depth knowledge of malware and rogue apps.

ITX Tech Group provides IT security services to companies both small and large throughout all 50 states.

Our committed approach offers exemplary computer network assistance to all our clients. We provide managed IT services including hardware and software installations and support.

Contact us today to see how we can help to secure your network for the long-term.