ARE FIREWALLS OBSOLETE???

Discussion in 'other firewalls' started by casper99, Jun 19, 2002.

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  1. casper99

    casper99 Registered Member

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    The owner-operator of my ISP say's that firewalls are obsolete and just get in the way. He say's if you have all the M$ security updates that you don't need a firewall. Do you agree with this? Do you disagree? And why do you agree or disagree.
     
  2. Paul Wilders

    Paul Wilders Administrator

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    Hi casper,

    Well, since you are a satisfied OutPost Pro user, seems like you did answer this question yourself :D.

    For some reason or another many ISP's make such statements. Others provide commercial firewalls for free (I know several). If only to control outbound traffic, (trojan servers?) a firewall is in place. Personally, I would recommend using a hardware firewall as well - but that's stage no. 2.

    regards.

    paul
     
  3. Checkout

    Checkout Security Rhinoceros

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    That's like saying, if you have M$ you don't need a hole in the head. :(
     
  4. Pieter_Arntz

    Pieter_Arntz Spyware Veteran

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    Don't forget the leaks M$ hasn't been made aware of yet :p
    Seriously. I would hate to be visible to all those sweeping IP's looking for victims to plunder.

    Regards,

    Pieter
     
  5. casper99

    casper99 Registered Member

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    :)Hi Paul, yes I am a satisfied OP user. The reason I made this post was to get other net users opinions on this. And I was hoping that some would post links as to why they agree or disagree. I'm somewhat new to the internet and computers, so I need all the help I can get. What is a hardware firewall and is it really needed for the casual home user? Thanks for your reply, and the other replys too. Happy Trails :)
     
  6. Prince_Serendip

    Prince_Serendip Registered Member

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    Hi Casper99! There are lots of different firewalls to choose from, freeware, shareware, and buyware. If you are a beginner and as yet have no firewall I'd recommend Zone Labs' "ZoneAlarm," so you are not roaming the wild with no clothes nor gear. It's dangerous out there! ZoneAlarm is available as freeware. (Who doesn't have a tight budget?) Here's the Link: http://www.zonelabs.com/store/content/catalog/products/zonealarm/znalm_details.jsp
    This should help you to get started. You might also want to get the freeware companion to ZoneAlarm called VisualZone. It helps you see what you are dealing with and you can make reports on it to Dshield. The Link is: http://visualizesoftware.com/
    :) Good Luck! You'll get lots of info and assistance here. The people at this site really care!

    Ah, so you use Outpost Pro. Okay. I'll leave my post as it is. I think your ISP owner is "nuts" to trust his stuff to M$ only. I was once told by my computer repair technician that he uses no protections of any kind at all! Seems lately he has been dealing with Spida and Klez. The best you can do is keep informed, gain experience, come to Wilders, and then make your own decisions!
     
  7. FanJ

    FanJ Guest

    Hi Casper,

    In this thread I posted some links for an introduction to routers:

    http://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=1031
     
  8. UNICRON

    UNICRON Technical Expert

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    Call me cynical but often when people make statemaents like "firewalls are obsolete", I tend to wonder what their motives are.

    As a tech support guy for an ISP, I tend to think he is tired of dealing with people who have misconfigured firewalls, and blame the ISP for connection problems. My ISP has a page detailing where to get free firewalls, but also says that they do not support them. To get help from them, you must first turn off all firewalls, bypass any routers and restart your machine. Yuck!

    I don't think educated people (about trojans hacking etc) would say such things. Having all the M$ patches is great until the next buffer overflow is exploited. The poor record of M$ in this category is enough to convince me that firewalls are indeed useful. I'll gto as far as to say that people have an obligation to reduce the chances of someone using their computers for ill purposes. Just like you must use reasonable effort to keep your car from killing someone while being driven by a driver other than you. Most damaging hacks are launched from computers under the control of a trojan. If even something as simple as ZA was able to stop a trojan on your machine, a great disaster could be avoided. Unfortunately this is only possible is all people use a firewall.

    If I ran an ISP I would bundle a free firewall with the install CD they like to give out. (I don't use them because I know there are just to advertise to you, but I have my own firewall)

    Similarly, all OSs should have a firewall that is on by default.

    It is entirely possible to make a home router/firewall that comes in the form of a network card. This would be a big leap forward for n00b home security.
     
  9. wizard

    wizard Registered Member

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    No running network services, no need for a (personal-)firewall.

    wizard
     
  10. spy1

    spy1 Registered Member

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    Kind of ignoring the 'spyware that tries to call home' issue there, aren't we, wizard?

    Especially considering the fact that most computers are used by more than one person in a household, any of whom might not care a whit about such issues? Pete
     
  11. Checkout

    Checkout Security Rhinoceros

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    ...and there are still floppy disk viruses...
     
  12. UNICRON

    UNICRON Technical Expert

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    nobody is calling home if no networking is configured. Floppy viruses are indeed still somewhat of a threat but have little impact on whether a firewall needs to be on a machine with no network to speak of.

    the fact that Wizard was able to post makes me think that he does have some sort of networking configured ;)
     
  13. TAG97

    TAG97 Registered Member

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    No Firewall
    Hmmmmm, wouldn't that be like having a lock without a door?
     
  14. wizard

    wizard Registered Member

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    No but what can a personal firewall do if the spyware simply uses a webbrowser for communication? See http://tooleaky.zensoft.com/ for a prove of concept. Many spyware software used this method in the past. So for spyware the usage of a network sniffer is much more efficient.

    This is an issue but not a problem that could be solved with a personal firewall. The other person can ignore the personal firewall or turn it off.

    wizard
     
  15. wizard

    wizard Registered Member

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    That's why there is anti virus software. No personal firewall can detect or protect from viruses.

    wizard
     
  16. wizard

    wizard Registered Member

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    Yes. But I work totally as a 'client maschine'. No running network services, no open ports. If someone wants to break into my computer he has to do this in front of my maschine or he has to hack my ISP's server where my computer is connected to.

    wizard
     
  17. controler

    controler Guest

    I am guessing if you are using a Cable, Wireless or DSL
    internet connection you are using a LAN.
    The whole damn internet is a NETWORK.
    How can you not be using a network and still connect to the
    internet?
    If we were to be super paranoid and look at every bit of input and output traffic we would never have time do do anything else online. That is why we depend on honest
    software and hardware makers to help us out.
    I still believe the normal home user (not me LOL)
    should keep their computer as simple as possibe. Limit the software and learn how to reformat often.
    Take a DOS program. Write 1 & 0's to the drive many times, then FDISK, REFORMAT /U and install all yuor basic software.
    Yes I am still going to write a post here for newbies on how to reformat their drive, from making sure they have all the nessery drivers ect before hand.
    [glow=red,2,300]controler[/glow]
     
  18. wizard

    wizard Registered Member

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    I am using a network to connect to the internet. But I do not offer any kind of network services ('open ports') to the net. Therefore my computer is running as a client. If someone wants to 'hack' my computer he needs at least one network service (server) running to connect to my maschine. Easy and simple. :)

    wizard
     
  19. Smokey

    Smokey Registered Member

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    Or a wife without ....o_O :D :p :D ;)

    Ciao,

    Smokey
     
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