As more businesses undergo digital transformation, the need to protect data has become more critical. Another factor that is pushing data security to be a priority is the rapid development, higher complexity, and increased prevalence of different cybersecurity threats such as virus, malware, trojans, denial of service attacks, phishing, and ransomware. Firewall software provide a primary defense system by keeping outsiders blocked while alerting you when your own applications are trying to connect outside.
What is firewall software?
Firewalls have evolved over the years as technology and corresponding threats also made improvements. Traditional firewall software that filter data packets, translate addresses, and inspect states have been upgraded by next-generation technologies with more device filtering functions. Next-generation firewalls (NGFW), which can take the form of hardware appliances, software, virtual machines, or a combination of these, now include other security systems such as deep packet inspection and intrusion prevention systems. They are now more thorough in their inspection, smarter in their approach with AI, and affects network performance less.
Best firewall software
The best firewall products today are available in various configurations for both commercial, industrial, and personal applications. Common features include the ability to assess and filter user access, create a barrier between your network and the internet, automatically block unwanted access, and alert users when suspicious and unauthorized access is being attempted. The best firewall software depends on an organization’s setup, and may range from a simple free application downloaded on a desktop, or a combination of hardware, software, and a central management system for continuous monitoring of threats. Firewalls are now more essential as companies work with remote teams.
SolarWinds Security Event Manager is a firewall security management application that works on top of firewalls. From a central management platform, users can monitor continuously and keep track of all firewall activities. It is a tool that enables teams to identify anomalous activities quickly such as a connection denial by a firewall or intrusion activities like port scanning. The software improves situational awareness and reaction speed while providing more flexibility in performing admin tasks.
Juniper offers SRX Series NGFWs in various physical form factor appliances as well as a virtual form. The vSRX in a virtualized form factor delivers security services that can scale network demands. Features include a core firewall, robust networking, full next-gen capabilities, and automated lifecycle management. It supports other Juniper applications and third-party solutions as well as integration with cloud orchestration tools. It can be applied in both private and public clouds and are available on AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure marketplaces.
SonicWall offers network security firewalls for different business sizes with both physical and virtual products. Its NSv Series virtual firewall provides scalability and agility with all the advantages of a next-gen physical firewall appliance. It is custom-built to secure the cloud and shield your enterprise from different types of attacks and common network-based exploits and threats. Features include flexible deployment options, Real-Time Deep Memory Inspection, centralized policy configuration, unified management, and integrated solutions.
WatchGuard, a provider of firewall appliances, also offers cloud and virtual firewall software. WatchGuard FireboxV brings network security to the world of virtualization with features such as real-time monitoring, multi WAN support, and scalable solutions to any business size. Like its physical appliance counterparts, it offers full HTTPS inspection, support for mobile devices, and comes with its own Fireware OS. Users can gain visibility into their network activity as well as faster and safer web surfing.
GlassWire is a free firewall software for Windows. It allows you to see current and past network activity with its network monitoring graph. The software detects spyware, malware, suspiciously behaving apps, and programs that are consuming your bandwidth, then blocks their connections. It warns of network-related changes or unusual changes that could indicate malware. The firewall software can also monitor other PCs and issue alerts when new unknown devices join your wi-fi network.
Comodo offers Windows-compatible antivirus and internet security products that include a firewall software. It allows users to remove existing viruses and isolate unverified programs, but they are also able to block incoming online threats. It is an affordable solution that includes features such as on-demand scan, on-access scan, boot time scans, heuristics, IPS, sandbox, email security, and anti-spam along with the firewall.
FortiGate NGFWs are available in FortiNet security appliances, in the cloud, as well as a virtual appliance. FortiGate-VM offers consistent connectivity protection across public and private clouds with high-speed VPNs to protect data. It shares the same features available in hardware firewalls with a centralized management system. It is effective against a variety of threats with support for all security and networking services and ensures application security and secure connectivity with micro-segmenting and other advanced security features.
Sophos XG Firewall is a complete system of hardware and software to provide businesses with enhanced protection, performance, and visibility. It is also available as a software appliance in Azure and AWS platforms to protect public, private, and hybrid cloud networks with support for virtualization platforms as well. It provides cloud-based central management and reporting tools that allows configurations, updates, backups, and new deployment easily. It includes built-in reports as well as tools to build your own custom reports.
Avast offers Windows-compatible products that have built-in firewalls to keep hackers from sneaking into your computer and stealing data. s like Premier or Internet Security has its firewall software on by default to keep intruders on the other side of the wall. It monitors and controls internet traffic that goes in and out of the computer. The solution works together with other information security components such as real-time virus detection, security weakness scanners, and unauthorized encryption applications.
Norton Smart Firewall
Smart Firewall by Norton is a component of its device security products such as Norton 360. The firewall software monitors incoming and outgoing internet traffic to prevent threats from reaching your computer. Along with the product’s intrusion prevention system, they work together with different approaches to detect malware and intrusions from network traffic. In particular, Smart Firewall allows permitted traffic into a network and blocks unauthorized traffic from entering. IPS then examines the traffic that the firewall has allowed to enter. The combined approach helps protect personal files and data from malicious attacks and intrusive viewing.