Nowadays most of the people are using WiFi router in their homes to distribute the Internet connection for all family members and guests. It’s usually very convenient and aesthetic solution. However it’s often not secured properly as the routers are perfect targets for hackers and other bad guys.

Recently the SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab reported that millions of routers around the globe are vulnerable because of the new USB over IP feature. The full list of affected vendors includes 26 companies, just to name a few D-LinkEDIMAXTP-LINKWestern Digital, and ZyXEL.

Luckily with Avast you can significantly decrease the risk of getting hacked as it comes with the featured called Home Network Security (or HNS). This awesome feature is even included even the free version so you don’t need to pay for upgrade.

We have put together a list of 5 simple steps you can do to increase the security of your home router and essentially your family.

Secure Your Home WiFi Network With Avast Antivirus for Free
Secure Your Home WiFi Network With Avast Antivirus for Free

5 Steps to Secure Your Home Router

1. Run the Home Network Security scan in your Avast

To perform a HNS scan simply open Avast, go to SCAN » Scan for network threats » Scan network.

HNS can reveal following issues on your home network: misconfigured WiFi networks, weak/default router passwords, router vulnerabilities, compromised Internet connections, and not protected IPv6 protocol. It will also show you a list of all devices connected to the network, so you can check if you know all of them.

For more information see the great video below, explaining how to use the Home Network Security feature and how to resolve all the issues.

2. Change Your Default Router Login Credentials

Typically your home router still uses the default vendor login credentials, like admin//admin. Unless you change these anyone can basically login into your router settings simply by Googling the router type. See the below table from as evidence.

Examples of the Default Login Credentials for ASUS Routers
Examples of the Default Login Credentials for ASUS Routers

3. Turn Off WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup) Feature

The WPS feature has been developed to increase security of the WiFi networks for users who don’t know how to set it up manually. However after major security flaw was revealed in the late 2011, most of the security experts are actually advising to disable WPS.

4. Turn On The WPA2-PSK Authentication With The Strong Password

At the same time while you will be disabling WPS, make sure you are using the WPA2-PSK authentication with the TKIP+AES encryption (sometimes also called Mixed Mode). This will ensure your password won’t be ‘visible’ to cyber-criminals.

For authentication use a strong password with at least 8 characters containing both upper and lower case, numbers and at least one special character (` ~ ! @ # $ % ^ & * ( ) _ – + = { } [ ] \ | : ; ” ‘ < > , . ? /)

Example of the Recommended Router WiFi Security Settings
Example of the Recommended Router WiFi Security Settings

5. Keep Your Router Firmware Up-to-date

After you change your router login details, don’t forget to check for the latest firmware update. Keeping your router up-to-date is an essential thing as the updates are mostly released because of the security flaws. You will find information how to do this on your router’s vendor site.

Don’t forget to always log out from the router administration before you will close the browser window. It reduces the risk of getting the login spoofed.

Source: Avast Official Blog – Avast Home Network Security is ideal for the self-employed

Written by Paul B. | Team

My name is Paul and I love Avast since the Home Edition v4.8 (2008). I am recommending it to all my friends, but I realized they don't know how to use it. So I started this site in order to help others getting maximum from this awesome antivirus. Feel free to contact me via Facebook, comments below or this form.

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