Why Your Business Needs a Firewall

These days we are savvy enough (we hope) to know when a friend’s e-mail has been phished. We know not to click on suspicious links or download zip files from people we don’t know. Every day one can find SPAM and other dubious delights in the inbox, and we may think throwing everything in the trash will help keep the computer safe. It may help a bit, but if you manage a business you need to make sure your systems are sufficiently protected with anti-virus software and firewalls that prevent bugs and other dangerous hacks from compromising your security and that of your client base.

Why do you need a firewall to protect your business? Consider that computers and the Internet have vastly changed over the last decade. Where in the beginning websites served merely as informational pieces to highlight the products and services of a company, these days sites are more interactive and functional. You probably use your website to collect customer information, accept orders for product, maintain chat and messaging for feedback, and other purposes. In some cases, websites serve as applications people can use on mobile phones, and that takes quite a bit of power.

Also, if your business employs cloud computing for storing important data, you don’t want to risk a security breach. Companies tend to utilize cloud services for ease of use, and while one employee can remotely access what he needs to work, without a firewall it’s possible anybody could get into your private data and cause havoc.

It’s important, therefore, that the software you use to keep your data secure is updated and checked consistently for bugs and possible breaches. You may be tempted to go with an inexpensive system that covers only so much ground, but if you are hacked it is likely you will spend more money making everything right. Having a good firewall in place before disaster strikes not only prevents these breaches, but offers other benefits:

  • Firewall software can keep track of suspicious logins from the outside, and help you discern where trouble is brewing.
  • Firewall software can help filter out SPAM e-mails, so your employees won’t have to wade through lots of useless messages to get what they need.
  • Firewall software can help you block suspicious applications that try to get to you via affected websites and programs.

Updating your business Internet system with a firewall and working anti-virus software keeps you online and in business.

Kathryn Lively is a freelance writer specializing in articles on Norfolk business Internet services and Norfolk IT consulting services.