Difference between Firewall and Intrusion Detection System

A firewall is a hardware and/or software which functions in a networked environment to block unauthorized access while permitting authorized communications. Firewall is a device and/or a sotware that stands between a local network and the Internet, and filters traffic that might be harmful.

An Intrusion Detection System (IDS) is a software or hardware device installed on the network (NIDS) or host (HIDS) to detect and report intrusion attempts to the network.

We can think a firewall as security personnel at the gate and an IDS device is a security camera after the gate. A firewall can block connection, while a Intrusion Detection System (IDS) cannot block connection. An Intrusion Detection System (IDS) alert any intrusion attempts to the security administrator.

However an Intrusion Detection and Prevention System (IDPS) can block connections if it finds the connections is an intrusion attempt.

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