Reis Blog

Visit the Reis Blog regularly for information an advice on information technology management in Canada, and around the world.

Why Does My Business Need a Firewall?

Like many small-to-medium sized businesses, you're probably wondering why your business should have a firewall. Aren't there other services that can be used instead? In this post we'll explore this common question. 

firewall 

You might be asking "Why do we need a firewall?" or "why do we need a firewall if we're planning to migrate our services to the cloud?"

Well in the world of digital business, there's no safety in being small when it comes to threats online. Whether your business is a Fortune 500 company or a small professional office, your company needs a firewall.

Surprisingly, small businesses are a common target if cyber crimes. If you want to keep your organization's and your customer data protected to avoid damage to revenues and the reputation of the business, you need to start with paying attention to IT security. A strong firewall is a great place to start. 

 

So, what is a firewall?

As a first line of defense against cyber criminals, firewalls are a barrier between computers and potential threats from the internet. A firewall's job is to keep suspicious data out of the company's network while letting safe data in. 

Hardware firewalls are a form of firewalls that include hardware (example, a router) and some software to run; businesses use this to block attackers on several computers.

Software firewalls can be installed solely on individual computers and are more suitable for users at home. This type of firewall is often integrated with privacy controls, web filtering, and other security features to make sure they work well. 

 

Do SMBs Need a Hardware Firewall?

For sure! For the majority of SMBs, it's an awesome front-line defense against harmful network traffic. When a hardware firewall is compared to a software firewall, the hardware version provides robust protection, easy to install, and works 24/7. Without having a hardware firewall, your business is pretty much inviting hackers to have access to the sensitive data your business has. 

While software firewalls protect systems by blocking threats and malicious network traffic, the hardware option stops suspicious data from getting into the network. In an ideal situation, the setup of a firewall would include both hardware and software firewalls to maximize security. 

 

Should you switch to a hardware firewall?

Maybe you have thought about getting a firewall but are having some concerns such as:

  • My small business is low risk
Cyber criminals don't care what type of business you're in. They send out an army of bots to corrupt computer networks for businesses of any size. In fact, in recent trends there have been statistics that cyber attacks are becoming more popular. 
  • Hardware firewalls are too expensive
The cost of the hardware might sound like it's a lot of money upfront, but weak defenses cost more.
  • I already have a small business software firewall
Traditional cyber security techniques are not enough for modern sophisticated attacks.
  • We just moved to the cloud

We're sorry to say that cloud security isn't enough. Even with all of the protections you can get in the cloud, it doesn't protect your infrastructure from threats. 

Other reasons for why you need a firewall:

  • Control access
  • Cloud implications
  • Secure databases
  • Virus protection
  • Protect local networks
  • Verify remote connections
  • Monitoring and alerting

How can MSPs Help?

Even though firewalls provide a strong foundation for your network's security, all threats can't be eliminated. There are a variety of firewalls and every business has unique needs. An MSP is able to help you determine what the right type of firewall for your company and recommend other strategies that can provide security. 

An MSP can also figure out how cyber attacks got past your current security systems and strengthen your defenses - if you've suffered an attack. Also, an MSP can figure out your network vulnerabilities. 

Finally, an MSP can supply the hardware, configure it, and manage it for your business so you can focus on your core company initiatives. 

 

We've reached the end of this blog post. We hope you see the value of a firewall for your business. Feel free to comment and ask questions in the space below!

 

Download Free Guide  To learn more about how to hire an MSP

Sources:

Bocetta, Sam. (2018). Why Your Small Business Needs a Firewall. Retrieved February 13, 2019 from, https://www.hostpapa.ca/blog/security/why-your-small-business-needs-a-firewall/ 

Mahoney, David. (2017). Why Does My Business Need a Firewall? Retrieved February 13, 2019 from, https://vermontconnections.com/blog/why-does-my-business-need-firewall/ 

Xirtix Consulting. (2017). Are hardware firewalls necessary for small and medium businesses? Retrieved February 13, 2019 from, https://www.xirtix.com/2017/05/are-hardware-firewalls-necessary-for-small-and-medium-businesses/ 

     

Increase Revenue Growth and Boost Your Business Success With IT Support.

Book a complimentary business systems assessment today and learn how Reis can help turn your capital costs into operating costs!