No business appreciates getting spam e-mails, but more harmful are network vulnerability probes and attacks. And while these can strike at a network from anywhere in the world, most small U.S. businesses rarely even make use of their Internet access to distant countries. Despite this, according to Deutsche Telekom, an organization with 97 sensors around the globe that track malicious network traffic, most of the spam and cyber attacks they encounter originate from foreign countries. For instance, they have found that, by far, the greatest source of cyber attacks is Russia, followed by Taiwan, and various European countries. The most spam e-mails, meanwhile, originate from India. Herein lays the value of filtering Internet traffic by country, known as Geo-IP filtering. Geo-IP Filter allows administrators to block connections coming to or from a geographic location. Despite its potential value, many businesses are not aware they have a network firewall capable of Geo-IP filtering. In particular, many of Dell’s SonicWALL firewalls, including the NSA series and some TZ series devices have come equipped with Geo-IP filtering since 2011. We at Edge Solutions Group not only install and manage SonicWall firewalls, we cater these firewalls to your business, adding another layer of geographic protection carved and customized for your particular business needs.
Prior to SonicOS 126.96.36.199, Geo-IP Filter, once enabled, was applicable to all hosts behind the SonicWALL without exception. Administrators had no option to include/exclude hosts behind the SonicWALL. Starting with SonicOS 188.8.131.52, SonicWALL Geo-IP Filter can be set to “all” or “firewall rule-based.” Setting the option to “all” will, of course, block all hosts behind the SonicWALL. The “Firewall Rule-based” option, however, introduces more granularities. Rather than blocking all traffic to the selected countries, this option will filter traffic according to a customizable rule, which can be configured in the “Firewall/Access Rules” area of SonicWALL’s interface. This way, a business can create exceptions to the filtering, like allowing specific IP addresses or ranges of IP addresses (for instance, the address of a foreign client), or allowing e-mails. This allows the filter to remain flexible, while still providing a wide defense. This isn’t Captcha level filtering; that fuzzy string of letters and hieroglyphics that you’re praying had a capital J at the end, works fine for spam bots. But much of the world’s spam today comes from real people, so you want to have all the tools necessary to protect your company’s data and sanity with the ability to beef up your protection by incorporating geographic protection. If you don’t do business with anyone in China, there’s no reason we should let spammers from that region have the opportunity to email you in the first place. Visit our SonicWall product page for a list of Geo-IP capable devices.
Call Edge at (310) 499-4929 to learn more, or tweet us @edgemanaged. Don’t believe a word I’m saying? Follow this link for a video introduction on Geo-IP.Share