Firewalls for small businesses

A firewall is a security mechanism that monitors and controls traffic between your entire network and the Internet. It can block or allow incoming traffic and inspect and filter outgoing traffic. The firewall checks whether traffic conforms to the established rules and blocks unwanted or malicious traffic that could potentially harm the network. The firewall thereby increases the security of the network and protects it from unwanted access and attacks.

A firewall is generally installed directly on your Internet connection, or directly behind a router that has already been provided (e.g. by Telekom). Your entire network is only behind the firewall.

You can find out which type of firewall is beneficial for your company by speaking to one of our experts:

Frequently asked questions about firewalls

Don't I already have a firewall in my router?

Most small and medium-sized businesses receive pre-configured routers from their Internet providers. Well-known models in Germany include the Telekom Speedport or the widely used Fritz!Boxes from AVM.

It is important to know that all of these routers already contain a built-in firewall, which is usually configured to prevent outside intrusion into the network as much as possible.

It would be unreasonable to say that these built-in firewalls are bad. However, this is basic protection that can quickly reach its limits for companies that work with highly sensitive or critical data.

For example, there are legal requirements for the use of firewalls in certain industries and business areas in Germany. In particular, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), companies that process personal data must take technical and organizational measures to adequately protect this data. This also includes the use of firewalls as part of a comprehensive IT security concept.

There are also industry-specific regulations, such as in the areas of healthcare or financial services, which require specific protection of personal data and may require the use of firewalls.

Is the firewall that is already installed on my Windows system not sufficient?

Standard firewalls like Windows Firewall are designed to provide basic security for home users and small businesses. They mainly filter incoming traffic to prevent intrusions. However, corporate networks often require a higher level of protection, including sophisticated threat detection and prevention capabilities, that these firewalls do not provide.

Focus on inbound traffic

Pre-installed firewalls focus on inbound traffic, which is important but only half the battle. For comprehensive security, companies also need to control outbound data traffic. This control is necessary to prevent data leaks and block communication from malware that may have entered the system.

Lack of adaptability

Every company has unique security needs based on its size, industry and the nature of its data. Pre-installed firewalls offer limited customization options, making it difficult for organizations to tailor rules and policies to their specific needs.

Limited reporting and monitoring

Corporate networks require constant monitoring and detailed reporting to identify potential vulnerabilities and respond to security incidents in a timely manner. Standard firewalls typically lack the in-depth analytics, real-time alerts, and comprehensive reporting capabilities needed for this type of control.

No centralized administration

In an enterprise environment, network administrators must manage and coordinate rules and security policies across a variety of devices. Standard firewalls typically do not offer centralized management tools, making this task complex and time-consuming.

What is the difference between a firewall and endpoint protection?

Endpoint protection and firewall are two different security measures that can be used together to create a comprehensive security network.

A firewall monitors and controls traffic between your entire network and the Internet and can block unwanted or malicious traffic. So it protects the network from external threats.

Endpoint protection, on the other hand, is software that is installed on end devices in the network, such as laptops or desktop computers. It protects the end devices from threats such as malware, viruses or phishing attacks that can reach the devices from outside or within the network.

While the firewall protects the network as a whole , Endpoint Protection focuses on protecting the individual devices on the network. Together, they provide a comprehensive security network that protects both the network and endpoints.

Why should I as a small company use an (additional) professional firewall?

Professional firewalls offer greater granularity and configurability in monitoring and filtering network traffic. They also often enable centralized monitoring and management of the network, as well as specialized features such as intrusion detection and prevention, advanced VPN connections, and multi-layered security measures.

Here are eight concrete examples of what professional systems differ from "simple" systems such as: B. a Speedport or a Fritz!Box differs:

  • 1. No unwanted remote access (security gaps)

  • 2. Advanced VPN connections

  • 3. Multi-site protection

  • 4. Protection of multiple IP addresses

  • 5. Additional protection through IDS and IPS

  • 6. Backup redundant firewall systems (seamless protection)

  • 7. DMZ as a buffer zone

  • 8. Permanent access to the latest threat databases

Protect your business

Talk to our experts and find out how you can protect yourself against cyberattacks and data loss with a professional firewall.