NETGEAR on keeping smart devices safe from ransomware

Recent headlines have indicated that numerous appliances are being used as access routes into home networks, to hack other devices such as laptops. NETGEAR, Inc.’s Armor powered by Bitdefender can be used to protect devices such as smart fridges, TVs, thermostats, robot vacuum cleaners, toasters, coffee machines, baby monitors, and so onArmor provides multi-layered cybersecurity to defend the connected home and unlimited IoT devices from online threats, at home and on-the-go.

Smart appliances often receive unencrypted firmware updates without any authentication or code-signing required, and a skilled hacker can replace the factory firmware with a malicious one. Hacked appliances act as a WiFi access point, establishing an unencrypted, unsecured connection to a companion app. Attackers who target one appliance can gain control over others, turning on devices, hobs, water heaters, etc, displaying ransom messages and making them beep incessantly. Owners are forced to either pay a ransom or permanently pull the plug on their device.

 Remote Hacking
That’s even more alarming. Most smart home vendors don’t think this through but from there, it’s easy to access computers and other devices connected to the same network. A victim likely wouldn’t even notice. Devices not connected to a network can be even more vulnerable and save hackers a few tiresome steps.

Armor runs on selected NETGEAR mesh router systems and routers to protect networks and connected smart home devices against ransomware, trojans, spyware zero-day exploits, rootkits, malicious links, fraudulent websites intent on stealing personal data such as passwords or credit card details, and other online threats. It’s essentially an anti-virus for your router rather than one you have to install on individual devices,controlled via the app.

Bitdefender’s award-winning anti-virus, anti-malware and data protection software for end devices is built into NETGEAR Orbi Mesh WiFi systems and Nighthawk WiFi routers too, to make IoT security concerns a thing of the past.

NETGEAR Armor includes:

  • Web Protection that helps you to browse safely by alerting you to and blocking potentially harmful webpages
  • Bitdefender VPN that encrypts your internet connection to keep online browsing and connection to public WiFi networks private and worry-free. Existing customers can access the VPN feature for free for up to 200MB of encrypted data traffic per day per device, by updating to the latest version of the Bitdefender app
  • Bitdefender Security that provides on-the-go protection for iOS, MAC, Android & Windows devices
  • Active Vulnerability Scans on every connected device in your home
  • Instant Alerts to notify you when threats are detected and blocked through the NETGEAR Orbi/Nighthawk app
  • Anti-theft Protection if your devices are lost or stolen (*for Android and Windows Devices)

Hacked appliances are also often rendered incapable of receiving firmware updates. If devices aren’t getting updates for the rest of their lifespan, that means a whole house filled with vulnerable devices that leave you open to network breaches, data leaks, ransomware attacks and DDoS.

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