Critical Fix for Critical Bug
If you own a Netgear router then take heed of the following warning: you’re device may be at risk! A vulnerability has surfaced recently with the only fix being an updated version of the firmware released only yesterday. Within the last couple of weeks, Netgear had released an official statement reporting that as many as 10,000 individual routers had been compromised due to the security flaws found in the old version of firmware. The bug was discovered by Switzerland’s GovCERT program and reported to the Compass firm. The CTO of Compass, Alexandre Herzog, had reported that the vast majority of the users who were affected by the attack were located in the US. The attack is all based around an exploit concerning the ability to bypass authentication, and the attacker can login and enter the administrative interface of affected Netgear routers without needing a valid username and password. But the most concerning part is that average users aren’t aware of the control this exploit gives an attacker once they have logged into your router.
In the recent past, there has been a rise in router malware and hacking attempts across many devices by a variety of manufacturers. But what’s the real risk and threat of these types of bugs? Well, once an attacker has secured control of your device, they can wreak all sorts of havoc on your network. Most importantly, they have the power to control where your traffic goes by changing the DNS configuration. This would allow them to redirect your traffic to their own malicious servers before sending it to the intended destination. In turn, this will allow them to see and steal any information flowing in and out of your network if it hasn’t been encrypted by a VPN tunnel. And the damage this could inflict on you personally is only limited by the type of information you send over the Internet.
Just An FYI
If you weren’t aware that routers can also be victimized by malware attacks, we offer some advice concerning how you can protect yourself from potential threats. In this case, if you owned a Netgear router that was susceptible to the attack, it could have been vulnerable for several months or even longer. It was only noticed that the security flaw existed a while after many of the attacks had already taken place. But the good news is that when you have been alerted that your device is at risk and your manufacturer hasn’t created a patched version of firmware updates, you do have options to help secure your information. To protect your wireless router and your home network, you could upgrade the firmware to a third-party code version that is known to be secure such as DD-WRT. Remember that you always need to upgrade your firmware to the latest version of code, and if your router is susceptible to this attack then you shouldn’t procrastinate upgrading to the latest version. Unless you upgrade your code as soon as possible, an attacker might hack your router and steal your personal information!
And again, don’t forget to get a good VPN, of which you can find if you head over here.