Cyber Security: Traditional vs. Next Generation Firewall Graphic
September 28, 2017
By Heather Gwaltney

While your employees are emailing co-workers and customers and browsing the Internet, hackers and spammers are diligently trying to access their data, email and credit card information.  In 2015, IBM’s CEO stated that ‘Cyber crime is the greatest threat to every company in the world.’  Now, two years later, “global ransomware damage costs are predicted to exceed $5 billion,” according to Cyber Security Ventures.

A firewall is your company’s first line of defense

Since firewall hardware also acts as a company’s router, it is literally the gateway to email and the Internet and therefore, is also the first line of defense in blocking cyber attacks and viruses.  When a company sets up their Internet, they are automatically given a router, but standard routers contain software that is either not activated or simply does not have the capacity to protect sensitive data and servers from hackers.  Watch our three-minute video on cyber security.

How a basic firewall works

A basic firewall is usually a dedicated hardware appliance and contains software that is configured to block unauthorized access to a computer network.  During the configuration stage, it is set up to be able to decide which network traffic to allow or block, based on a defined set of security rules. Firewalls are designed to be integrated with Windows networks and other systems, and can also be integrated with Virtual Private Networks (VPN) solutions.  Learn more about how it protects your company.

Why the need for a Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW)

Firewall technology has been used to safeguard businesses for 25 years, but because the sophistication and reach of cyber crime has increased dramatically, the technology has also had to evolve to remain effective. That brings us to the discussion of traditional vs. Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW) technology.  The largest impetus to the NGFW technology stems for companies’ reliance on apps and the need for more refined data filtering.  Traditional firewalls have failed, as MyDigital Shield puts it, “in their inability to inspect the data payload of network packets and their lack of granular intelligence in distinguishing different kinds of web traffic…Traditional firewalls cannot distinguish between legitimate business applications and attacks, so they must either allow all or reject all.”  NGFWs address these issues largely because they provide “deep-packet inspection that moves beyond port inspection and blocking to add application-level inspection, intrusion prevention, and intelligence from outside the firewall,” states Gartner.

Side-by-side comparison of traditional vs. NGFW technology

Industries that need NGFWs the most

General cyber attacks primarily affect small and medium-sized business and enterprises, organizations with remote workers and/or branch offices, school campuses and other public institutions.  The #1 cyber-attacked industry is Healthcare.     

How GTB can help

GTB can assess your company’s network security and tell you if your network is currently secure or exposed to threats.  If exposed, we can design and implement a security solution that is customized to your company’s needs.  And once installed, GTB will continue to manage the system, so you don’t have to.  Managing your firewall includes:

  • Understanding your company’s security environment and ongoing needs.
  • Monitoring incoming and out going ports.
  • Monitoring threats coming through the company’s network.
  • Checking new updates for the firewall ongoing.
  • Upgrading the latest security patches ongoing.
  • Keeping informed about the newest threats and protection methods.
  • Adding services based on current threats and protection methods, as necessary.  

Get Your Free Security Assessment Now


Related: How to Protect Your Company Against Cyber Attacks, Ransomware: What Is It and How to Reduce the Risk for Infection? and Keeping the Bad Guys from Derailing Your Network