As IT pros already know, when we speak of ports, we mean the 16-bit virtual ports used when interconnecting systems i.e. during communication over protocols such as TCP or UDP and not physical connections on the system such as USB, HDMI etc. See the OSI model and list of port numbers and their assigned function if not an IT pro. Port 80 is commonly used for HTTP activity, for example, and many applications communicate using assigned default ports.
Foot-printing your environment is the first step to identifying ways in which intruders can penetrate your network. Thankfully, we offer a free utility that helps with precisely this task! In this Snip, Anthony Howell shows you how to use Ipswitch’s WhatsUp PortScanner to scan a host machine for open ports, then he’ll show you how to harden your system using the host’s firewall.