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What is a Firewall?

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What is a firewall you ask?

A firewall is software or hardware that can help protect a computer from hackers or malicious software.

A firewall helps prevent malware, worms or viruses from gaining access to a computer through a network or over the Internet.

Here are some risks of allowing a program through a firewall.

In Windows you can allow a program or open a firewall port to send information to or from your computer through the firewall. 

Your computer is less secure and vulnerable to attacks every time you open a port or allow a program to communicate through the firewall. The more ports are open, then the more holes exist on your computer or network for intruders to enter. This will allow hackers to spread a worm or access your files on the network.

If you open a port, it stays open until you close it, whether or not a program is using it. If you add a program to the list of allowed programs, the "hole" is open only when needed for a particular communication.

To help you decrease your computers security risk make sure you understand what a firewall is and what type you are using. (software or hardware)

All home routers bring a built-in firewall capability to block programs or network ports.

Only allow a program or open a port when you really need to, and remove programs from the list of allowed programs or close ports that you no longer need.

Never allow a program that you don't recognize to communicate through the firewall.

What is a worm?

A worm is a self-replicating program, similar to a virus. A worm can allow a malicious user to take over your computer or send out enough copies of itself to cause your computer or a web server to stop responding.

What is a Malicious software?

A malicious software is designed to harm your computer purposely. Examples of malicious software are viruses, worms, and Trojan horses. These software are also known as malware.

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