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Security & privacy

Warning: Bug allows complete takeover of dozens of popular routers

Your router plays multiple roles in keeping your home network together. Not only does it connect all of your gadgets to the web, but it also acts as a gateway for the data that comes and goes from the rest of the internet. As a result, it’s the perfect target for malicious hackers that want to take down all of your devices.

This is the reason why we strongly recommend doing as much as you can to secure your router. Of all the devices in your home, aside from your computer, it’s probably the biggest target. Tap or click here to see the surefire ways to keep hackers out of your router.

When a security flaw is discovered in network devices like routers, it can spell disaster for internet users across the globe. And now, a bug has been found in 79 different popular router models that can allow hackers to take over your devices remotely. We have the complete list of affected routers, as well as what you can do to protect your network.

NETGEAR routers suffer from dangerous security flaw

According to reports from ZDNet, a critical security flaw has been detected in 79 different NETGEAR routers that can allow hackers remote access to your devices. The bug was identified by two independent security researchers and confirmed by a detailed proof-of-concept test that showed the exploit in action.

The issue, apparently, lies in how affected routers handle administrator settings. These routers fail to properly protect user input like passwords and settings, which means hackers can easily inject malicious requests that bypass your router’s security.

Thankfully, the researchers pointed NETGEAR to the flaws, and the company has pledged to release a series of patches to protect these routers from compromise. Unfortunately, we don’t have a set date as to when these patches will materialize, and NETGEAR acknowledges that several older routers may not even receive patches in the first place.

Good grief, can’t these hackers just give us a break already? We’re already dealing with an unprecedented spike in cybercrime as it is. In their minds, they’re probably choosing to strike while the iron is hot rather than let an opportunity slip by. Tap or click to find out why phishing attacks are increasing and how to protect against them.

Which routers are affected? What can I do to protect myself.

In a twist of good fortune, we have a list of all the NETGEAR routers currently affected by the bug. You can confirm if your router number matches any of these by checking the bottom of your device where the barcodes and network information is found.


Since no updates or patches are available yet, you may be waiting for some time before your router is fully safe to use. In the meantime, you can check for updates by following these steps below:

  1. Open your router’s admin page by typing your IP address into your address bar. You will then be asked to enter your admin username and password. These can usually be found in the user guide for your router, but if you don’t have this information, there are sites that can help you figure it out. Tap or click here for a list of default passwords for 548 router brands.
  2. Once you’re logged in, locate a section called Advanced or Management to look for firmware updates.
  3. If an update is available, download and install it to your device.

Check if updates are available every couple of weeks or so until the patch is available. If your router is more than five years old, however, you might need to pick up a brand new one to stay safe. Tap or click here to see Kim’s favorite brand of router.

Until the patches are fully available, use your best judgment when browsing the web. Make sure to avoid any unusual or unfamiliar websites during your sessions, and be especially careful of email attachments that could put your computer and network at risk. At this point in time, it’s just not worth tempting fate.

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