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Internet Connection Security for Windows Users
by Steve Gibson, Gibson Research Corporation

Hardware Firewalls/NAT Routers

External firewall and NAT router appliances provide excellent "natural protection" from external intrusion hacking. For systems where a NAT router makes sense (i.e. multiple machines sharing a single Internet connection) we highly recommend the use of a good NAT router.

However, no hardware of any sort, running outside of a computer, can possibly provide comprehensive protection against the very real dangers from the internal extrusion of your personal and private information.

The access rights of INDIVIDUAL applications can ONLY
be managed and controlled through the action of some
form of "agent" able to watch from INSIDE the computer.

The HOT setup . . .
My specific recommendations are, of course, subject to moment-to-moment change and reconsideration in this highly dynamic Internet security market. However, today — as for the past six months — there is no better and more secure solution than running a single, external, NAT router — providing redundant external intrusion protection — coupled with copies of the FREE ZoneAlarm firewall — providing the PC industry's most comprehensive internal extrusion management.

(Note: The money you save by running the free ZoneAlarm firewall
on multiple computers more than pays for a NAT!)

We note that this solution does not offer the additional features of parental control, advertising, and cookie blocking offered by, for example, Symantec's NIS product line, but Symantec's solutions are not free, and they all currently fail to provide comprehensive internal extrusion protection.

Tim Higgins' excellent "Practically Networked" web site offers the Internet's most comprehensive, extensive analysis, and unbiased review of Internet connectivity hardware gizmos and gadgets.  I recommend Tim's site without reservation! 

To continue, please see: Tracking Firewall Updates

You are invited to browse these LeakTest pages:

How to Use LeakTest 1.x

Personal Firewall Scoreboard

Firewall Vendor Responses

Vulnerability Disclosure Policy
Hardware Firewalls/NAT Routers

Tracking Firewall Updates

Frequently Asked Questions

LeakTest News & History

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Last Edit: Aug 26, 2005 at 14:27 (6,896.54 days ago)Viewed 7 times per day