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security : firewalls

A firewall is a set of related programs, located at a network gateway server, that protects the resources of a private network from users from other networks.

(The term also implies the security policy that is used with the programs).

An enterprise with an intranet that allows its workers access to the wider Internet installs a firewall to prevent outsiders from accessing its own private data resources and for controlling what outside resources its own users have access to.

Basically, a firewall, working closely with a router program, examines each network packet to determine whether to forward it toward its destination.

A firewall also includes or works with a proxy server that makes network requests on behalf of workstation users.

A firewall is often installed in a specially designated computer separate from the rest of the network so that no incoming request can get directly at private network resources.

There are a number of firewall screening methods. A simple one is to screen requests to make sure they come from acceptable (previously identified) domain name and Internet Protocol addresses.

For mobile users, firewalls allow remote access in to the private network by the use of secure logon procedures and authentication certificates.

A number of companies make firewall products. Features include logging and reporting, automatic alarms at given thresholds of attack, and a graphical user interface for controlling the firewall.

security news

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Entuity this week announced it had upgraded its network management software to include capabilities to monitor in real-time firewall metrics, VPN gateways, as well as host and server systems.

Businesses have two new options for simplifying their branch office networks with multifunction devices from NetDevices and Adtran.

Also: a scoring system for telephone support; Borland jettisons legacy wares; Feds and IPv6; San Franciso and Wi-Fi

Check Point has upgraded its Eventia event-correlation software so it can now include data from Check Point's own endpoint security platform and from Windows operating systems.

Check Point says it has carried out its vision of uniting security management across the four areas of the corporate networks that must be protected: perimeter, Web, internal and endpoint.

Take one of the founders of Foundry Networks, add in the former vice president of software engineering at Extreme Networks, then mix in a former Juniper vice president and top off with a former senior director at Cisco - what do you get? You get ConSentry - the newest contender for the role of building the next replacement for the firewall.

Khtmlersky Lab has released a beta version of mobile anti-virus software for smart phones using the Symbian OS, it announced Thursday.

NetContinuum is jacking up the power of its application firewall with a new appliance that replaces its initial offering and adds new options for deployment that are less intrusive to the network.

Moving from one brand of gateway firewall to another is proving to be a daunting task that corporate customers say takes six or more months because of a lack of industry standards and dearth of migration tools.

Microsoft's Live Labs has launched two security-related Web-based services, one for providing authentication and another for connecting peer-to-peer applications through network firewalls.

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