FirewallsA good firewall is an essential part of your online security. A firewall for your personal computer will involve a software-only (no extra hardware) installation that watches what traffic passes in and out of your computer, and allows or blocks access based on a set of rules. A firewall is not a substitute for basic security consciousness on the part of the user, however. While it will keep out malicious attacks on your PC, it will not necessarily block you from viruses or other emailed nasties. You will still need virus and spyware scanning software.
Zone Alarm is probably one of the best known personal firewalls on the internet. Free for personal use, it blocks hackers from infiltrating your home PC by hiding your computer from unsolicited network traffic.
The Comodo Personal Firewall is another award winning free firewall offering comprehensive personal security.