KUTA, Bali ~ A personal firewall is a software application used to prevent unauthorized users from accessing your PC, prohibiting potentially harmful data from entering or exiting your system. Firewalls are not a replacement for anti-virus applications, as their job is to control inbound and outbound communication between your computer and the internet, essentially isolating your computer from the internet with code-permitting or -denying communication based on your preferences.
Think of a personal firewall as your personal satpam (security officer), checking out guests before they are allowed to enter your home. Antivirus applications are more like your doctor. Each serves a specific purpose.
When youâ€™re connected to the internet, your computer sends out identifying information as it makes requests for web pages, downloads and emails – and it is also constantly receiving packets of information, not all of which you want to receive.
With a personal firewall set up, any attempt by an outside program to access your computer will prompt you each time a connection is attempted. Over time, the firewall learns from your responses to determine what internet traffic you want to permit/deny to/from your PC.
My personal firewall of choice is ZoneAlarm, a free version of which can be found at www.zonelabs.com.
With Joshua Bressor
The Bali Times
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