Hardware firewall

  michaelandjolou 01:27 01 Apr 06

My wife and I have just discovered that our credit cards have been compromised. I am running Counterspy, Spybot S&D, Zone Alarm Pro and EZ antivirus. Can anybody, including PC Advisor, recommend a good hardware firewall?

My system is XP home on a Mesh PC. If you need any further information please let me know what you need to know.

  phono 01:42 01 Apr 06

I have a Netgear DG834 router with hardware firewall, I also have the software firewall, ZoneAlarm Pro, Counterspy, Spybot S&D, and others, my credit card was also compromised a few weeks ago, to this date I do not know how this happened.

Suffice to say, it does not matter what hardware, or software, precautions you take, if you sanction a payment by providing credit card details, which are subsequently misused, knowingly or otherwise, you cannot expect a hardware firewall to assist you.

  john-232317 06:58 01 Apr 06

If you are going to make payments over the net, the only safe way is to keep one account low and just transfer enough into it to cover your payment each time, that way the card will bounce if used fraudently ;-)

  john-232317 07:01 01 Apr 06

Sorry should have read " one debit account low."

  michaelandjolou 09:16 01 Apr 06

Can I just add that at this moment in time it has not been established beyond reasonable doubt that my wife or I have been stupid.

Can I re-phrase and ask if anybody can let me have some suggestions for a hardware firewallas we would like to add some additional protection to our system.

  CurlyWhirly 14:14 01 Apr 06

I have recently upgraded to a router from a USB modem and my router comes with it's own hardware firewall and I also still have my McAfee (software) firewall as well.

I always make sure that I am on a secure website when entering credit or debit card details and I also use the XP on screen keyboard as if there were any keyloggers on your PC then it should be safer as no keys are actually pressed.

I would also tighten up on your general security say perhaps installing and running a2 from click here and seeing if it finds anything.

  john-232317 15:14 01 Apr 06

Like curlywhirly says maybe use a router instead of a modem.

PS. you have to be careful even on sites you may visit, example : click here

  phono 17:17 01 Apr 06

I don't for one minute believe that you or your wife have done anything stupid, I apologise if I seemed to give that impression.

The only transactions I carry out over the Internet are on secure sites and only with well established companies and my card was compromised, I have a theory as to how but I won't mention it here as a police enquiry is ongoing.

As regards a hardware firewall, for best results get one which has true SPI, that is Stateful Packet Inspection, and doesn't solely rely on NAT, Network Address Translation, to "hide" your computer from prying eyes.

The router I have, a Netgear DG834, has a true SPI firewall, other vendors will also have SPI firewalls, just check their specifications.

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