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Cyber Essentials and Firewalls

Boundary firewalls and internet gateways are one of the 5 key controls required for Cyber Essentials certification.   Our current series of articles focuses on each of the individual key controls required to improve the cyber security of your network and achieve Cyber Essentials certification. 

You can find an introduction to Cyber Essentials here.

Our articles on the other  controls are available:

Patch Management

Access Control

 

What is a firewall? 

Connecting devices to the internet comes with an element of risk.  Firewalls create a buffer zone between the internet and your network.  They form a boundary between your trusted internal private network and the untrusted external public network (the internet).  This enables all network traffic to be monitored and analysed.  Unwanted traffic can then be identified and blocked – preventing it from reaching your systems and networks.    

The firewall is where an organisations Access Control Policy is enforced.  This policy must be robust and realistic or the  firewall will be of little use.   The initial configuration and ongoing administration are also vital to its success in preventing threats from entering your system.   

For personal use, most people use the firewall provided free of charge within their Operating System.  Business use is more complicated and requires a dedicated firewall which protects the whole network.  Cyber Essentials certification requires that all devices connecting to the internet are protected by a configured firewall.   

 Choosing an effective system can be challenging due to: 

  • Confusion about what’s needed – software firewalls, router firewalls, network firewallsinternet gateways.  It can be difficult to establish exactly what your system requires to be adequately protected.   
  • Uncertainty about which product to choose – there are number vendors selling products with widely varying price points and features.  
  • Unified Threat Management devices – are relatively new the market and can manage several threats at one time.  These bring an added element of confusion when businesses are trying to identify a product that meets their needs. 
  • Worry about the impact on bandwith, remote access and compatibility with other business applications.  
  • Concerns about correct installation, configuration and management 

 Firewalls as a Managed Service  

Our technical experts can identify the correct product for your business.  We can take care of procurement, installation, configuration and the ongoing management of the service will be controlled by our Network Control Centre.   

 Firewalls should be only one factor of your organisations security strategy.  A multi- layered approach to IT security is essential No one element of IT security can protect your system from all the threats it faces.  You need a set of different but complementary tools working together to protect your system from harm. 

 Contact us today for more information on Firewalls and Cyber Essentials.   

 

RedMosquito provides IT Support across Glasgow, Edinburgh and central Scotland. 

 

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