A firewall’s essential function is to allow and deny data packets by determining the source IP address of incoming packets, the destination IP addresses, type of Internet Protocols (IP) the packet may contain and to provide various routing capabilities. Simply put, a firewall controls incoming and outgoing network traffic.
Once a firewall was considered a high level of protection against intruders, however as our reliance on data has increased, so has its attraction to hackers. Current best business practices consider a firewall the minimum level of security, which means it shouldn’t be your sole area of defense. It is simply no longer uncommon for hackers to circumvent firewalls to access data.
Sure, there are ‘hacker’ utilities to sniff out vulnerabilities in your firewall, but the most common method to gain access to your network is by merely asking for it. All it takes is a team member to click on an unsavory link or phishing email, and just like that, a hacker is granted access to your network, your data, and your business.
To raise your security to the level it needs to be to defend itself, you need to go beyond just a firewall and virus protection. You need to invest in more robust security measures including Intrusion Prevention System (IPS), Web Application Firewalls (WAFs), keeping current with patching vulnerabilities, strong encryption, and of course antivirus and malware prevention.
Now you can research, implement, manage and monitor an ever-increasing number of hardware and software products, protocols, and updates to maintain your security. Moreover, you have to ensure they can all communicate with each other without conflict, as a break in communication will lead to the breach in security, placing your organization at risk.
Or you can invest in a Unified Threat Management system (UTM), which provides a multifaceted solution that includes many network security essentials.
Simplicity disguises the incredible power and utility a UTM processes. A UTM can replace traditional multi-application solution and be configured to provide a wide range of security functions including:
Take a moment to consider the number of resources your business would need to invest in to support the separate applications and hardware required to reproduce what a UTM can provide in one device.
If your organization is currently using a patchwork of devices and software from different vendors and find your team is spending more and more time trying to keep intruders out, a UTM may be the answer. A UTM provides a comprehensive, nimble and cost-effective network security solution for any size business.
Call KT Connections today at 605-341-3873 to learn more about the benefits of a UTM and how it can help protect your business, reduce expenses and ensure the continued growth of your business.
Rodd Ahrenstorff is the Director of Business Operations for KT Connections, as well as a member of the company’s ownership team starting in 2014. Rodd has been working in the computer and telecommunication fields for over twenty years—a term during which he has held a number of leadership positions. In the past, he has served as a broadcast television engineer, an systems architect, and most recently Director of Information Technology, including a role as a HIPAA Security Officer for behavioral health and multi-specialty medical providers.
Rodd is a technology evangelist around the software defined data center and helps the systems engineers at KT Connections research technology trends and market forces. He also performs pre-sales engineering and deployment supervision to customers for Public, Hybrid, and Private cloud scenarios.
A native of Minnesota, Rodd grew up in a farming family around Worthington, MN. He has lived in Rapid City for twelve years now with his wife, Julie, and three children. Rodd is actively involved in his community as a Boy Scout leader and participates in various technology conferences.