Ports in cyber safety is very important. However, ports may refer to a variety of different things depending on the situation. For one, a port may refer to a USB port on your computer. On the other hand, a port in the networking world is used internet traffic monitoring and filtering. There are over 65,000 ports available for network communication.
These ports are critical in the flow of internet traffic. Tampering with just one could mean not having internet access or a pathway for attackers to have access to your data.
Ports can be very daunting to deal with for the first time without proper training and education. However, to understand how ports work is relatively simple. In a firewall, when it monitors the flow of data coming in and out, it does so by allowing the data to flow through almost like a dam. It has a series of gates that classify the data by type. Behind those gates there is an ocean of internet traffic that may need to be filtered.
When browsing the web, not all the data is the same and can be easily distinguished based on a number of factors such as protocols. For example, two common forms of protocols when browsing the internet is HTTP and HTTPS. These two protocols occupy two separate ports, numbers 80 and 443. A large majority of internet traffic is handled via these protocols; meaning that if either of those were to be restricted, the users would have problems surfing the web to access website. When a firewall is permitted to allow traffic for specified ports, it opens the doors that data type.
Every available port can be important and has its applications in certain environments. However, without the proper monitoring that a good firewall vendor can provide, an attacker could use the other available ports to their advantage. As discussed previously, there are different protocols that a person may use while browsing the web. Let’s take for example the two protocols described above, HTTP and HTTPS. Every protocol has a use case scenario. however, each protocol may also have a weakness. The difference between the two protocols above is security. HTTPS provides and extra layer of security that HTTP does not. Meaning that an internet user could be at risk of an attack by allowing unmonitored traffic through port 80 (port 80 provides unencrypted connection).
There are thousands of ports available to monitor. However, not all of them are necessary for your kind of business or internet traffic. Some of the most common ports seen when setting up security for your internet traffic are: ports 20, 21, 22, 25, 53, 80, 123, 179, 443, 500, and 3389. Ports 20 and 21 are used for transferring files between the client and a server. 22 is used for building secure network connections; 25 is primarily for email. 53 helps with associating IP addresses to URLS. 123 is for syncing clocks. 179 helps data reach the right IP address almost like a GPS would show you the most efficient route to a destination. 500 helps with IP address security. And 3389 is used for remote desktop connection so that you can get remote help on your computer no matter where you are as long as your connected to the internet
Firestorm Cyber provides quality firewalls that provide unmatched protection, with Sophos, against attacks and data theft. With the use of our firewall, we are able to configure it optimally for your workplace.
We take the hassle out of having to deal with the configuration process. By prioritizing data safety and your business needs, were able to find the right set and solution for your company.