In addition to the security settings available in the Action Center, you can prevent malicious attacks on your system with the Windows Firewall utility, as shown in the figure. A firewall implements a security policy by selectively permitting and denying data traffic to a computer. A firewall gets its name from a brick and mortar firewall designed to prevent fire from spreading from one part of a building to another.

You can configure firewall settings for home networks, work networks, and public networks. Further changes can be made by using the following options:

Access the Windows Firewall utility, in Windows 7, use the following path:

Start > Control Panel > Windows Firewall