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What is Stateful Inspection

A type of firewall which relies on tracking the status of a network connection and a rulebase. The handshake at the start of a network connection is observed and monitored, and if a successful connection is established, the firewall then makes an entry in a table to allow all future traffic for that connection to pass freely. The advantage is that a very high degree of security can be achieved and virtually all network based attacks can be thwarted with minimal performance impact.

Many stateful inspection firewalls also provide some application proxy capabilities for various types of network traffic. This allows them to filter requests and screen content.

Crown Copyright. Material taken from the DTI - Department for Trade and Industry. Reproduced under the terms and conditions of the Click-Use Licence.

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Term created / updated 2007-03-15 16:25:55

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