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< Previous Section: Security and Linux  Table of Contents   Next Section: What exactly is a Firewall? >

2         Firewalls – The First Line of Defense 

The most important first step in developing a secure environment is to avoid, wherever possible, having your Linux system being the first line of defense from outside attack. The best way to do this is to ensure that you have a firewall installed between your Linux system (or the network on which it is installed) and the connection to the internet. If, for example, your Linux system is currently connected directly to a cable or DSL modem box then you will need to think seriously about installing a router or wireless base station that includes a firewall feature between the modem and your Linux system. Linux does come with a firewall that can be configured to protect you and we cover this later in the book. It is better, however,  not to rely solely on this.

A firewall essentially stands between your computer or network on which your computer resides and shields it from the dangers lurking on the internet. It can either be a software program that runs on a computer system or it can be built into a hardware device such as a wireless base station or router hub. In this chapter we are going to look at firewalls as a part of a wired or wireless hub. In later chapters we will look at configuring the firewall software on a Linux system to provide a second layer of defense against attack.

< Previous Section: Security and Linux  Table of Contents   Next Section: What exactly is a Firewall? >

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