Your firewall is the most basic, yet most essential, cyber security tool available. Firewalls act as a gatekeeper for your network, protecting you from the global network by inspecting all inbound and outbound traffic. Without your firewall, a hacker can easily breach your network.
Firewalls are one of your network’s primary success, security and PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) compliance technologies and they can be scrutinised in PCI DSS audits. When it comes to PCI DSS and firewalls, there are some proactive steps you can take to help you prepare for an audit and to adhere to the guidelines.
5 Steps to Strong Firewall Security:
1. Set Security: Set specific security settings for each port, especially if your using segmentation.
2. Establish Rules: Update and configure your firewall rules if your applications and systems don’t have security hardening (out of date software, default passwords etc.).
3. Inbound/ Outbound Rules: Decide what traffic and IP addresses can come in and out of your network and servers.
4. Use Multi-Factor Authentication: If you are using remote access on devices taken off the premises, set up and use multi-factor authentication when allowing access to networks with sensitive data.
5. Segment Internal Networks: Segment different networks with switch ports.
It’s imperative that you keep your firewall security up-to-date. You can ensure that your firewall meets regulatory guidelines with a firewall review and audit. This will uncover and address any vulnerabilities ahead of regulators, and more importantly, cybercriminals.
Take your time to address these rules and you’ll be well on your way to meeting the objectives of PCI compliance.