FirewallScript has just launched a software-based security service that can be used on any server that supports PHP5, and even provides support for shared hosts.
The firewall is very similar in function to the popular open source firewall ModSecurity, but according to co-founder Ron Myers, there are some important differences. For one, a ModSecurity installation is server-wide, meaning that nobody on a shared hosting plan is able to install or modify its settings. This inevitably leads to problems, because ModSecurity tends to take a generalized approach to protection which may conflict with valid applications run by users who are unable to disable it.
In contrast, FirewallScript can be installed by any user on a server, even under a shared hosting plan. All users can install or modify their security settings at will, and FirewallScript offers ‘Rule Packs’ which are pre-configured for certain web apps like WordPress and vBulletin. This allows users to tailor their security to cover things that applications like ModSecuity may have mishandled. Installation is also a breeze, requiring only a simple install script and a minimal amount of technical knowlege.
I think that FirewallScript could have a place in the market, given that the vast majority of small-time sites are hosted on cheap shared hosting plans. But I question how many people will be unsatisfied with the security their plans already provide, or how many will care about security to begin with. For those that are interested, enter the code ‘techcrunch’ for 50% off the normal price of $85.