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Web Stalkers
Chapter 9 - Self Protection on the Web

Recommendations for Firewall Safety

If a door in a physical firewall is left open, it reduces the effectiveness of the firewall.  This is necessary at times to move equipment in or out.  In a computer firewall, there are times when certain people outside the firewall need to legitimately gain access to resources inside the firewall.  This might be employees that travel, work from home or are business partners. There are technical solutions to this requirement, but sometimes the easiest solution is to open a virtual door.  This is dangerous as hackers are very adept at finding open doors.  Whether a firewall is protecting home or business, it is crucial to avoid leaving any doors open.

Once a firewall solution appropriate for any particular set of circumstances has been implemented, it is important to make sure it is working.  An easy way to perform that check is by using a reputable firewall evaluation website.  It is important that the site be carefully evaluated prior to starting a check.  Hackers could operate a website that would evaluate a computer or network system’s security, notify the user that everything is secure when it is not, and then use any security weaknesses they find to hack the computer system.

Users should bear in mind that any evaluation done by a firewall vendor might have a hidden agenda such as trying to sell their product.  Use the methods discussed here to evaluate a web page that provides an evaluation of a computer’s firewall.

Most computers are not capable of being turned on remotely.  If a computer is not going to be used for an extended period, it should be turned off.  This length of time may vary from situation to situation.  Some people turn off their computers only when they are going out of town for a couple days.  Others turn the computer off if they are not planning on using it for more than a couple of hours.  For security purposes, users should remember that leaving the computer on subjects it to a greater risk of intrusion than turning it off.


The above text is an excerpt from:

Web Stalkers
Protect yourself from Internet Criminals & Psychopaths
ISBN 0-97-45993-9-5

by Donald K. Burleson, Stephen Andert
 

http://www.rampant-books.com/book_2004_2_stalkers.htm


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