When was the last time you did a security update on your Wi-Fi router? When was the last time you changed its password? Did you know that your Wi-Fi router could be infected with malware that’s monitoring and potentially stealing information from your network, right now?
For many home offices and small businesses, a Wi-Fi router is an essential piece of equipment. As long as it seems to be working, it also tends to be invisible and overlooked. That’s why routers can be very tempting targets for those seeking to break into your network or intercept your data.
To help you protect yourself and your business, Visibil.IT offers our managed Synology router. With a managed Synology router, you get higher security without having to keep up with the latest security threats, updates, and patches yourself. Let us do the work for you!
Routers Are Under Threat
In April 2018, the FBI, Department of Homeland Security, and the United Kingdom’s National Cyber Security Center issued a joint Tactical Alert. This alert warns that Russian state-sponsored hackers are carrying out attacks by exploiting network devices, particularly targeting the kinds of routers designed for small office/home office (SOHO) use.
Then in May 2018, DHS and the FBI issued another alert, this one warning about a specific malware called VPNFilter, which targets SOHO routers. Researchers found that this malware had infected over 500,000 devices worldwide, in 54 countries.
Further investigation found that this malware was developed by a Russian hacking group, like the ones warned about in the earlier alert. The malware can infect a wide range of routers, including models made by Netgear, LinkSys, MikroTik, QNAP and TP-Link.
Once it has infected a router, VPNFilter can cause a great deal of damage. For one thing, it can collect communications going through the router. The FBI warns that this could lead to the loss of proprietary or sensitive information.
VPNFilter can also take control of the router and use it to launch attacks on others. Plus, the attackers can command the malware to destroy the router itself. For many business, losing their network even for a few hours can cause serious problems.
Why Are Routers Being Targeted?
As TechRepublic reports, it appears that targeting routers may be the next big trend in cyberattacks. There are a few main reasons for this.
The FBI’s April alert points out that the security of routers is usually not maintained as well as the security of other devices such as servers and desktop computers. In other words, they tend to be invisible and overlooked, as long as they seem to be working.
The FBI warns that SOHO and residential-type routers in particular don’t generally run anti-virus or other security tools. Plus, owners don’t always remember or know how to change the default passwords and other settings.
Sometimes the issue is that owners don’t regularly perform security patching or that patches aren’t available.
And another reason routers are so vulnerable is that vendors produce an extremely large number of different models. The vendors themselves may have difficulty supporting and providing updates for all those different devices.
Ultimately, routers are also popular targets because once a hacker takes control of a router, they can do a lot with it. As TechRepublic puts it, the thing about routers is that they are both “high value targets” and “low-hanging fruit.” In other words, attacking routers is both easy and potentially very rewarding.
Protect Your Router, Protect Your Business
As you can see, defending your router from cyberattacks is necessary and important. That is what makes our managed Synology router so imperative.
You may have noticed that the list of routers affected by VPNFilter doesn’t currently include Synology. No router is invulnerable to attack, but Synology has a strong security focus with their routers. Consequently, they also have a good reputation for releasing security patches frequently.
Unlike some other vendors that release dozens of router models, Synology currently only offers two. This allows them to keep up with support and security better, as discussed above.
The most important piece of this security puzzle, though, is the Visibil.IT management of the router. When we manage your router or your network, that means we take care of keeping up with security issues for you.
We’ll set up your router so that it’s hardened against attacks, and then we’ll keep up that defense by updating it as security patches and firmware upgrades become available. We’ll monitor your router for signs of infection or attacks and take action to remove malware as necessary.
A managed Synology router may cost a little more, but it’s an investment in the security of your business. Let us help you keep your data safe and your business running smoothly!