The FBI is sounding the alarm and giving an official warning about router vulnerabilities. Apparently, foreign hackers are using a type of malware called “VPN-Filter” to target routers around the world. These router security vulnerabilities were present in many of the most popular router brands.
Your router is often one of the most overlooked of all your computer devices. Realize that hackers can and often do break in to a router, just as easily as any other device on your computer.
SO WHAT IS A ROUTER ANYWAY?
A router is defined as a hardware networking device that routes data from one computer network connection to another, on the internet. It performs traffic directing functions that allow authorized machines to connect to other computer systems. They are in essence electronic devices that join multiple computer networks together.
If your router becomes compromised, the security of all the devices that utilize that router, are in jeopardy. Once infected, Malware causes the router to block all network communications, thus rendering your router inoperable.
ADVICE FROM THE F.B.I.
According to the FBI, this Malware is difficult to detect and defend against. Therefore, the FBI is recommending that owners of home offices and small office routers should immediately reboot their routers. By doing so, it can disrupt this newly discovered Malware. The FBI is also recommending that, if you have not already done so, immediately change the “default” password and choose a new strong and long password.
Lastly, the FBI is also advising everyone to upgrade to the latest version of their router’s firmware. Unfortunately, the companies that produce routers don’t automatically notify you when an update is available. So, it is up to you to look for them and download them yourself.
In order to do so, you need to use your internet browser to log into your router, using your router’s IP address. By default, most router manufacturers use 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1 as the IP address.
Alternatively, using Windows 10 you can find your IP address by going to your Settings and choose the Network and Internet icon. Next choose Ethernet and click on your network. Then scroll down to Properties to find it.
It is recommended that you check for updates every 90 days. Below are the links to more information for updating the most popular brands of routers.
SCAN YOUR ROUTER FOR ANY BREAK-INS
Using the link below will enable you to check your router for any break-ins. It is a safe and free service that is specially designed to scan your router to make sure there are no hackers lurking in your router.
Here is the link:
Just click the “Check Your Router” icon and you’ll receive an instantaneous report.