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Stateless firewall

Stateless firewall

Stateless firewall definition

A stateless firewall is a type of network security device that processes each data packet individually to determine whether the data it contains presents a threat to the organization. Additionally, stateless firewalls do not store information about the current state of a connection and do not consider the results of previously processed data packets. Instead, they only act on the information they get from each incoming or outgoing packet separately.

Also, a stateless firewall uses the parameters previously set by either the admin or manufacturer to determine the validity of the data packet. These parameters can vary depending on what the user sets. Still, in most cases, stateless firewalls use the data packet’s source or destination, for example, to figure out whether the packet is legit or not.

When a data packet does not satisfy all the pre-set parameters, the stateless firewall categorizes it as a threat and restricts or blocks the data it contains.

See also: firewall, data packet

Stateless firewall advantages

  • Offers lower latency because it performs fewer analyses compared to other firewalls.
  • Uses the same hardware to process multiple connections, providing higher scalability.
  • Usually costs less than other firewalls because it is not as complex to operate.
  • Provides faster processing performance even for networks with heavy traffic.

Stateless firewall disadvantages

  • Can’t detect authorized data packets that are sent out of sequence because it does not track the current state of the network connection.
  • Can’t detect malicious content or malware because it only analyzes the headers of the data packets and not their content.
  • Does not protect against DDoS attacks, where bad actors send huge volumes of spam data packets to a network, because all these packets look legitimate and are inspected individually.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security