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Your home router is an easy target for hackers

According to Chief Information Security Officer Dan Greer of In-Q-Tel, the biggest threat to the Internet is something you have in your home right now. But it isn't your computer, smartphone or tablet.

No, he actually thinks the big threat is your router. That's right; the little tireless box you never think about that keeps all your other gadgets online.

Greer has a good argument though, which is that not many people know that routers have software, just like any other gadget. When that software gets out of date, it creates holes that could let hackers take control.

Don't believe me? Here are some examples of recent flaws in router software.

Once hackers have control of enough home routers, they can make a botnet - which is a collection of infected gadgets that a group of hackers control. Botnets are useful for sending out spam, infecting other systems or launching attacks against websites.

Given that just about every connected household in the world has a router that could have out-of-date software, you can see the potential problem. Unfortunately, router manufacturers aren't coming up with a solution just yet.

However, you can take steps to keep your own router safe. Just log in every month and tell it to look for software updates. It will install any that are available. Click here for step-by-step instructions.

While you're in your router settings, make sure you have encryption turned on to keep out criminals.

 

Source: Ars Technica
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