Technology February 9, 2020 Last updated January 7th, 2021 1,719 Reads share

What Is the Best Free Firewall for Mac in 2020

Image Credit: DepositPhotos

Firewalls are a good line of defense against cyberattacks. They serve as a shield, monitoring your incoming and outgoing traffic based on predetermined security rules and filtering it based on your preferences. 

A firewall is a system created to avoid unauthorized access to or from a private network. You can implement a firewall in either hardware or software form, or a combination of both of them. Firewalls help to prevent unauthorized Internet users from accessing private networks that are connected to the internet.

We recommend you to use them, as they may block malware from entering your PC and protect your privacy. Do you want a free firewall for your Mac computer? Here we have created a list of the best and the most reliable options for you.

What About Mac’s Firewall? 

“But wait!” I hear you say. “Is not there a Firewall already installed on my Mac?“. Yes, that is true.

Mac’s firewall can control your incoming connections and give a pass to the apps that come with a trusted ID certificate. However, it is not enabled by default.

You can turn Mac’s firewall on by visiting the System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Firewall. 

Next, you can go to Firewall Options to fully configure it. We would recommend that you check Block all incoming connections and Enable stealth mode

You can also manually select which services and applications should be allowed access, which is useful for file sharing. To do that, go click + and select your app of choice. This way, you will always get a pop up when an unauthorized app wants to connect to your Mac.

Blocking incoming connections is crucial if applications are “listening” to them. This was a necessary step on Windows, as there were a lot of vulnerabilities just a few years ago. Macs do not have these kinds of problems, and that’s why it is by default, turned off.

However, this function has its place. Testing vulnerable software, like web servers, can be made completely safe by turning on Mac’s firewall.

Still, we would not recommend using it in your day-to-day. It has enough flaws, and you can easily get better one completely free.

What’s Wrong With Apple’s Firewall

For the most part, Mac’s firewall is a hassle. Its dialog can frequently pop up while you are running applications and slow you down. Accepting this app can also be risky since it mostly punches a hole in your firewall.

Furthermore, Mac’s firewall does not monitor your outgoing traffic. This means that, once you are one a public network, every program can easily connect online.

This is not good news for your privacy. If you’ve downloaded malware that wants to send your personal data somewhere else, Mac’s firewall can’t do anything to stop it. Yikes.

And this isn’t an imaginary scenario either. 2019 marked a particularly bad start for Apple, with more than 16 million infected Macs in April. Malware is simply everywhere, which is why it is smart to up your defenses.

Although firewalls should not be your only line of defense, they can be a good ally. And, since these babies are free, this should be a no-brainer.

3 Best Free Firewall Apps for Mac

Lulu

Lulu is a reliable shared-source firewall for Mac that will stop every unknown outgoing connection you do not approve of. It has the power to block even OS and 3rd party apps from transmitting your valuable data. 

This is a completely free firewall, with no ads, premium features, or time trials.

Murus Lite

Murus uses the features of Apple’s own PF firewall to its potential. It features a simple, drag and drop interface that makes working with it easy. Aside from inbound filtering, Murus offers port management, bandwidth throttling, and numerous presets.

Radio Silence

Radio Silence lets you disable outgoing access for any app you want. We love it because it requires zero maintenance and is always on. It will monitor all of your connections in real-time, so all hidden processes will at once be revealed. The app also will not ask for your permission, which can leave your system vulnerable.

Radio silence is also easy on your resources, does not require much space, and is very fast. Lastly, it is super intuitive, so you do not have to be a tech geek to set it up. To unlock all functions, you will need to pay $9.

To Wrap It Up

To summarize, a firewall is a security system designed to prevent unauthorized access on a private network. Firewalls have helped protect computers in large companies for years. Now, they are a critical component of home networks, as well. 

Monitoring your outbound connections is crucial when you are using a public network. Although these free firewalls for Mac are powerful and reliable, they should not be your only line of defense from cybercriminals. As an alternative, you may download one of these free antivirus software to protect your Mac from cyberattacks. 

mac computer – DepositPhotos

Dana Kachan

Dana Kachan

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