A firewall is designed to protect your computer from any outside sources. It filters all of the connections and any information being passed through it. This can help to protect your computer system from viruses and even hackers trying to get in. The problem with a firewall is at times, they can be too good at their job. It can cause a slowdown in your Internet connection as well as creating connectivity issues when you’re on a video conference call. It’s best to know how a firewall can affect your ability to have a good videoconference. Here are a few things to consider when dealing with a firewall and how it can affect your connection to the call.

Video Conferencing Software Has an Impact

A determining factor to how your firewall will react with your call is what software you’re using to connect for a video conference in the first place, according the University of Colorado. You will need to know how your software is going to interact with your firewall. You may need to have those talking to connect directly to your Internet Protocol address depending on what kind of video conferencing software you’re using. When you’re using something like online video conferencing from Blue Jeans Network, you probably won’t have to make any adjustments to your firewall. All of the different networks will provide you with information regarding your firewall. If they don’t provide you with anything and you’re having trouble with making a clear call, simply contact the customer service line and they’ll provide you with more information about how to have a better call.

Turning off Your Firewall

If the solution is as simple as disabling your firewall, you should do this prior to any conversation. Make sure you turn the firewall back on after you’re done with your conversation, according to Life Hacker. The firewall still provides a lot of protection for your system and should be in place when you’re not on a call. The best idea is to create a video conference checklist. On the list, you’re going to have to show up to the video conference first, because you won’t have the chance to disable your firewall if the other party is calling you. At the end of your list, make sure you have a note to turn the firewall back on. If there are environmental things in the room, like adjusting the shades, you should add these to the list as well. Make sure you check the list every time you get on a call and you should have fewer problems.

How a Firewall Can Help

If you’re using a prominent network, like online video conferencing from Blue Jeans Network, you may not need to adjust your firewall at all. This is a good idea because of dangers like Heartbleed and other malicious viruses, according to The Guardian. Having the firewall in place can help to protect you from not only the viruses you my come into contact with, but the viruses your video conference mates come in contact with as well. Having an active firewall can help to prevent your computer and your network, from being infected by the virus. This is why it’s important to have video conferencing software compatible with your firewall. You can analyze the different choices and the requirements they have when you’re thinking about which ones to buy. If it appears the software will require you to turn off your firewall, you might want to think twice.

Cloud Video Conferencing Prevents Problems

One of the ways around having to worry about your firewall is to use a cloud-based video conferencing network. This way, your system is interacting with the cloud-based software rather than directly with the video conferencing software. The great thing about the cloud-based software is how little it requires on your part. You do not have to install anything on your computer and you have access to the video conferencing software you need all the time. It does not matter where you are. As long as you have access to the Internet, you have everything you need to start having video conferences. Many of the networks even allow you to have access through your smartphone or even through your tablets. These do not have firewalls you have to worry about, so you can easily access the network whenever you want to.

Keep in mind firewalls are designed to protect you and your computer. If you don’t have a firewall at all your system is exposed to anything. Make sure you’re looking into all your options before disabling your firewall. Even if it is slowing down your video conferencing session, its protecting your computers. The optimal solution is to find a way to use video conferencing without having to do anything to your firewall.