The easiest way to hide system names and IP addresses from external scanners is to use Network Address Translation...
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(NAT) on your network. NAT devices (usually border firewalls) allow you to use private addresses on your internal network and public addresses on your external one. Unless a NAT rule is specifically enabled, such configuration prevents anyone on the Internet from reaching systems that use private addresses.
When using NAT, it's a matter of best practice to use RFC 1918-reserved private address ranges. These include the 10.0.0.0-10.255.255.255, 172.16.0.0-172.31.255.255, and 192.168.0.0-192.168.255.255 address ranges. These addresses are not routable over the Internet, and they can protect you from firewall mis-configurations.
- A SearchSecurity.com reader asks whether firewalls alone can block port-scanning activity.
- Is it ever a good idea to put a firewall before a router?
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