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Firewall is a computer system that controls the flow of incoming and outgoing data on the network to prevent malware threats. It is an essential security tool that helps a business protect from cyber attacks and ensures that only authorized users can access and use information within the organization. Firewalls are also capable of preventing virus attacks that can shut down digital operations in an instant. With thousands of new threats being developed every day, it is important to put strong defenses in place to stop them from damaging the system.

The firewall acts as a barrier between the outside world and the company’s internal network by inspecting all packets (pieces of data for internet transfer) that enter and exit the firewall and checks them against pre-configured rules. It abides the rules that are pre-configured to be malicious or not, and does not allow any such packets into the guarded network.

Traditional firewalls such as packet filters and circuit-level gateways do not have dynamic features and can only monitor and report on the activities that they are engaged in. They are able to identify the source and destination of a packet and its port number. However, they are not able to read the contents of the packet.

A NGFW like Palo Alto Networks can perform more advanced functions than these and provide a complete overview of the network’s security status. It can log the activity and send reports to IT teams for further investigation of traffic patterns. These can help isolate areas for improvement or refine the security policy and achieve compliance.