Firewall Vulnerabilities and Threats

When it comes to keeping the valuable information and other resources in your networks safe from attack, the firewall is your first line of defense against outside threats. 

You cannot afford to leave the detected firewall vulnerability unattended. Because even monitoring and penetration testing often fail to reveal the flaws in your perimeter hardware defense. It is necessary to dig deeper to learn about potential leak sources. Some of the examples we will be discussing are below.

Lax Password

Passwords are notoriously difficult to remember, leading to the temptation to set straightforward ones or, worse, default to factory settings. If you allow this to happen on your system, you are exposing the data to all possible types of attacks and exploits. This is particularly true for your SQL server if an end-user has failed to strengthen their authentication credentials. The fall of one server jeopardizes all computers that are connected to it. 

Outdated Firewall Software

Vendors release software and firmware updates to help and patch up new firewall vulnerabilities that attackers may have found. Suppose your cyber team is lax about keeping your firewalls up-to-date. In that case, you are setting yourself up for a distributed denial-of-service attack or some other type of damaging breach that could compromise your data, have serious financial ramifications, and harm your brand.

Failure to Activate Controls

One of the most common firewall issues businesses face is related to controls that might not be appropriately activated. For instance, you probably have anti-spoofing tools on your managed defense system that are designed to keep malware, spam, and other deceptive traffic away. If you do not turn this control on, a distributed denial-of-service attack might happen soon enough. 

Remember, threat actors are working round-the-clock to gain access, and all they need is one chink in your armor. You must do your part to protect your security architecture against any possible risk.

Firewall Access May Be Too Lax

Some IT management or support staff fail to recognize that users may be accessing the firewall via an unencrypted Telnet connection. As if this were not potentially dangerous enough, malware can also creep into your defense hardware from the web in the same way.

Lack of Documentation

Without written logs, application documentation, and rule descriptions, your business could be in a terrible position. Especially if a critical IT support staff suddenly leaves. During such a transition period, your organization should not be forced to recreate protocols and rules from the ground up, resulting in a gap in accountability and knowledge as well as difficulties fixing firewall issues when they arise.

Vulnerability to Insider Attacks

By definition, this common firewall vulnerability is perpetrated by a person who has been permitted to bypass your perimeter firewall. That person also should have been entrusted with access to your internal systems. 

That does not mean that firewalls cannot still be effective. By implementing an internal firewall network segment configuration strategy (in which you divide your network into independent subnets), the attacker’s progress can be drastically slowed, giving you time to identify, isolate, and neutralize the threat.

Inspection Protocols Are Too Basic

Attackers have found ways to spoof traditional network firewalls that check the origin and destination of data packets. For that reason, the terms “next-generation: and “next-gen” firewall have been coined to define newer systems that also test the content of the packets using a process called Layer 7 or deep packet inspection.

If your company has failed to update or upgrade your firewalls, you might want to request that they do so to protect your systems from a breach.

No matter how robust your monitoring, rules, tests, and protocols might be, your system will never be immune from flaws or weaknesses. However, reducing the likelihood and severity of firewall attacks can go a long way toward safeguarding your valuable brand, data, and intellectual assets.  

Penetration Testing Services
Penetration testing is a cybersecurity best practice that helps ensure that IT environments are properly secured, and vulnerabilities are appropriately patched. A penetration test seeks to determine whether and how a malicious user can gain unauthorized access to information assets.

For over a decade, TrustNet has performed penetration tests to help organizations uncover hidden security vulnerabilities. Our proven methodology provides actionable steps for ensuring the security of your systems.