Deployed hardware firewalls are the physical appliances that enforce a network boundary. Network links cross this firewall which inspects both inbound and outbound network traffic and enforce access controls and other security policies. In an organization’s network infrastructure, deploying the right software or hardware firewall is critical. Although it can be challenging to choose which appropriate firewall that factors in all your business needs, knowing what to consider in a firewall is the first step. Before buying, several vital points to consider to find what kind of firewall fits your organizational network.
Size of the organization
The scale of your organization is a primary factor to consider whether using a hardware firewall is perfect and efficient. Generally, the more users you have in your environment, the larger the firewall needs to be. Complex hardware firewalls cannot be upgraded to accommodate new users. Thus, considering the future growth of your organization is necessary.
Although highly capable of filtering and removing malicious access in the network, hardware firewalls focus on limited and selected networks when inspecting. This is why hardware firewalls are perfect for small to mid-enterprises rather than big industries with multiple large networks. A more extensive firewall like UTM appliances is a much better option as it can manage large amounts of access and sessions in a network.
Depending on what type of industry your organization is, affects what firewall is needed for your network. In case your organization does not store customer data, a simple firewall may be enough. For an organization that highly runs a heavy traffic network and handles big data, a comprehensive, heavily secured firewall with virus detection, spam management, website blocking, country blocking, and real-time inspection of the data flowing to and from is what you probably need. Mainly if your organization handles classified data in which malicious attackers try to breach and get.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
The limitation of a hardware firewall is that it needs to be directly connected to the leading network. However, some hardware firewalls have a particular Virtual Private Network (VPN) tool installed in the client computer to connect to the network. The VPN tool offers remote access to log on to a secure network even outside the firm. But then again, the number of users with remote access influences the type of firewall you require and how much it will cost. Organizations typically use hardware firewalls VPNs for site-to-site connections. It can present security risks depending on how they are set up and used. However, if your company can afford a more sophisticated remote access technology, it is highly recommended to use it instead of a VPN.
Hardware Firewall or Software Firewall
Most organizations mainly use software firewalls for private networks because of their ease of installation in just your computer. You can easily set customized guidelines to block unsafe applications from running on your system. However, software firewalls can be challenging to configure. They can also only protect the computer they are installed on. On the other hand, hardware firewalls are stand-alone products that can allow multiple computer security. Though it still requires expertise to configure, it can protect the entire network by default. Because of this scalability, hardware firewalls can be expensive. But a purpose-built hardware firewall does a much better job of protecting the network.
In an organization, there can be a variety of devices that try to access the network within. Thus, it is another vital consideration to do when thinking of buying a hardware firewall. Device awareness allows the network firewall to identify, monitor, and report on all these devices in your network. When the hardware firewall is capable enough to know the range of devices, it can easily impose guidelines depending on the type of device.
It is always important to consider the cost factor when it comes to choosing the proper hardware firewall. Your organization’s budget plays a role when acquiring the perfect firewall for your organization. Without proper budgeting, it can be challenging to gain acquisition and maintenance of the hardware firewall. If not adequately maintained, data might leak, which can end up costing your organization a lot more than just money. Although, most modern hardware firewalls are now cost-effective. So, if you ever invest big money on one, you can be confident that a hardware firewall can reliably ensure a secure network from outside attacks and unwanted access.
All in all, you should review these key points before getting a particular hardware firewall. Knowing what to consider brings an advantage when choosing among the different types of network securities available. It is much better to get the perfect firewall to protect your organization against intrusions. But, amongst the types of firewalls present today, consider a hardware firewall at Sangfor as a safe option for you.