You may have heard the term firewall before but have you ever wondered how does a firewall work and why do I need one? A computer firewall protects your computer by putting up a barrier to keep anyone from accessing your files when you are surfing the Internet.

Once a hacker get access to your files malicious codes spread through your computer retrieving your personal information that the hacker can use to steal your identity or charge items with your credit card numbers. So how does a firewall work?

A firewall not only stops this from happening but keeps the malicious file out of your computer so it can’t spread to your other files. That’s why it’s called a firewall because its job is similar to a firewall that keeps a fire from spreading from one area to the next.

If a hacker tries to invade your computer files to get your passwords and credit card numbers you’ve used for online purchases he simply can’t get access. Computer firewall software will allow good data in but blocks all bad data from entering your computer.

Good data is when you are surfing the Internet, visiting web sites, downloading photos or data files. But bad data, like hacker programs, or anything that spies on your Internet habits without your knowledge is not allowed.

When computer firewall protection is enabled, everything that goes in and out of your computer is monitored. With the amount of malicious programs on the Internet today it’s also a way to prevent spyware and adware from getting into your computer.

Many people think that the anti-virus software that came with their computer protects them from hackers. While it’s important to keep anti-virus software updated for viruses it does nothing to secure your computer against direct hacker attacks.

Whether you have a dial-up, cable, broadband or DSL connection, every minute that your computer is connected to the Internet, it is at risk. Hackers are looking to do you harm and even steal your identity. Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes today.

One of the most effective ways to guard your personal information and keep these criminals away from your sensitive passwords and credit card numbers is the use of computer firewall protection.

You’ll hear the term firewall used a lot in the near future because these problems are growing at an alarming rate on the Internet. You’ll probably also hear other people ask, how does a firewall work and why do I need one? But now you’ll know the answer.

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