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IT Security FAQ 9: What is the difference between a firewall, antivirus and services like Detectify?

June 8, 2016

Cyber security overall has a pretty wide spectrum, and solves vulnerability issues in different ways. Antivirus is the traditional method, where a program looks through all files on your computer or software looking for bad patterns. If there is something in the file that the antivirus doesn’t recognize, or if it is trying to send information or reach information that doesn’t make sense, it will notify the user.

A firewall is more like a door keeper. It keeps track of the traffic going in and out of the computer or network. You can have it installed in your router at home, for example. If something is trying to access your network / computer, like a virus or a trojan horse, it will block the malware.

Comment from the expert:
”Services like the one we provide at Detectify takes an opposite approach to antivirus and firewalls. Instead of blocking bad things, we try to hack your site. It’s like someone trying to break into your house just to let you know that ’hey, there’s a way to get in here that you should look at getting fixed!’ It’s the method of white hackers, and also the method that most IT-security consultants use. You try and hack a website to identify its vulnerabilities. At Detectify we’ve automated this process and built a type of ’burglar robot’”, says Johan Edholm at Detectify.

Want more IT security information? Don’t miss out on the other parts of our IT Sec FAQ series!