Cybersecurity & Tips for Protecting Your Home Network
Once again, cybersecurity threats are in the news. The breach in messaging app WhatsApp and privacy concerns around the viral sensation FaceApp both serve as a reminder that tools we use every day can render us susceptible to cyber threats. Even more common, more familiar vulnerabilities like phishing scams, fraudulent websites, and malware continue to expose us to risks that may have a negative impact to our home network, our devices, or our personal information. With such threats on the rise, do we really know how safe our devices are, and we taking the best possible precautions to keep our home network safe?
Who is Bitdefender?
As a global leader in cybersecurity aiming to deliver transformative technology security solutions, Bitdefender is the ideal partner to help us bring you NETGEAR Armor. As a provider-of-choice, Bitdefender is used in over 38% of the world’s security solutions and since 2001, they have protected half a billion systems in more than 150 countries. Their popularity is well-earned as they’ve consistently created award-winning security products and threat intelligence for people, homes, businesses and their devices, networks and cloud services.
In addition to their industry-leading products, Bitdefender is an excellent resource for all things related to cybersecurity. Their blog and news articles provide valuable information from their team of experts about the latest in security trends, new technologies, and industry insights.
What is NETGEAR Armor?
With NETGEAR Armor, you get advanced, best-in-class protection for your network and all of your connected devices. By leveraging Bitdefender Total Security, NETGEAR Armor ensures your devices stay protected both when you’re at home as well as when you’re away from your home network.
Armor’s main features include:
Intelligent Device Management & Alerts
Anytime a device joins your home WiFi, you’ll automatically receive an alert and can take appropriate action. You’re able to control which devices are able to connect to your network and block any unknown devices. For the devices connected to your network, Armor will protect those devices and notify you whenever threats happen to be blocked.
Safe Surfing & Dynamic URL Blocking
NETGEAR Armor actively safeguards your network from cyber threats such as viruses, spyware, hackers, spam, malware, and more. Through secure browsing, Armor helps block known malicious sites and applications, keeping you safe from phishing, fraud, and ransomware.
With regular scans, NETGEAR Armor is able to identify network flaws and vulnerabilities found on connected devices that can lead to remote unauthorized access, data theft, or malicious attacks. These scans also check for password strength, firmware version, and any weakness that can provide easy access to your entire home network. A detailed weekly report provides you with tips on how to address and secure your network, based on any vulnerabilities detected.
Whether you’re on your home network or away, Bitdefender Total Security keeps all of your devices secure against all cyber threats, including viruses, Trojans, spyware, ransomware and more. This award-winning protection provides coverage for an unlimited number of devices under a single subscription and is available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, & Android devices.
Supported on our Orbi Mesh WiFi Systems (RBK50, RBK50V, RBK53S) and Nighthawk Routers (RS400, R7000P, R6900P), NETGEAR Armor provides advanced protection for your home and all of your devices. From antivirus & ransomware protection, to vulnerability assessments, to on-the-go protection, Armor is a key tool in helping to protect your family from cyber threats.
What else can I do to stay safe?
With or without NETGEAR Armor, it’s always a good idea to take some basic precautions to make your network as safe as possible. Here are a few tips:
Change Your Router’s Default SSID – Sounds simple and a no-brainer, but believe it or not, some don’t. By changing the name of your WiFi network, or SSID, potential attackers won’t know what type of router you have. With that information, a cybercriminal may be able to find out vulnerabilities of that router model, giving them an opportunity to exploit the router.
Change Your Router’s Default Password - For passwords, a good rule of thumb is to have a password that is at least 12 characters long and use a combination of letters (uppercase and lowercase), numbers, & special characters. Even better, think outside of the box and use phrases that are easy to remember and have meaning.
Enable Guest Network – While it may seem harmless to allow guests on your main network, it can do more harm in more ways that you can imagine. In the event your guest’s device is already infected, or they accidentally download a malicious program while on your network, there is a chance your local network and all of the devices connected becomes exposed.
Activate Network Encryption – Wireless security protocols such as WEP, WPA, and WPA2, were developed to protect home networks. In your router’s settings, you’ll be able to select the level of security for your network. If your router offers WPA2, it is typically the recommended option, as it further improves your network’s security.
Updating Firmware– Updates to your router firmware, device operating system, security software, web browser, and apps become available to fix bugs and security. It’s wise to always make sure you are on the latest version as it’s the best defense against viruses, malware, and other online threats.
Back Up Your Data – With storage options like Network Attached Storage (NAS), external drives, and cloud storage, you should always look to protect your most valuable data. With threats like viruses, the data on your computer may not only be stolen, but it may also be erased. Even worse, ransomware attacks happen when a hacker encrypts your computer’s data, making it useless, and orders you to pay a ransom release your data. With regular data backups, you’ll ensure you always have a copy of your important files.
Safe Web Browsing – Whether you’re doing online banking, shopping, or simply browsing the web, you want to make sure the sites you are visiting are secure. The easiest way to tell is by seeing if there is a closed padlock in the address bar of your browser, or if the URL begins with “https” instead of “http”. Also, many phishing scams involve clicking links from what may seem as a legitimate source. Link clicking from trusted sites are fine, but if you’re ever in doubt, it’s best to go directly to the source.
Do you regularly practice these online safety tips? What are some additional measures you practice ensuring your home network stays safe? Tell us below!
To learn more about NETGEAR Armor, please visit: https://www.netgear.com/landings/armor/
To learn more about Bitdefender, please visit: https://www.bitdefender.com/