As a small business, it might be tempting to purchase a wireless router from a big-box electronics store — they’re cheap and, in terms of connecting your business to the Internet, they work.
But, those low costs come with a great risk. Home routers are increasingly becoming the target of online criminals who are exposing vulnerabilities and creating loopholes to steal sensitive data.
According to the Internet Storm Center, a wave of comprised Linksys home routers were reported in February within a span of a few days – and that sort of mass exploit isn’t rare. The same fate hit Asus routers, which have also recently been subjected to hacks.
The virus impacting traditional home router systems is being labeled as “The Moon.” Here’s how it works: The virus essentially takes over the router and scans for vulnerabilities. This could mean a weak password or other non-secure avenue that allows hackers to access the system.
In the midst of the panic, Linksys released a statement on its website indicating the company is aware of “The Moon” and is working to eradicate the problem. However, Craig Young of Tripwire says the issue is far from over.
“In recent years, the computing power of the average home router has increased substantially to support features like streaming media and file or print sharing,” Craig Young of Tripwire told the BBC. “These additional features offer new attack surface while the additional computing power creates new possibilities for what an attacker can do with a compromised device.”
While perhaps more affordable at the onset, the use of a vulnerable router is one that could lead to greater costs down the road – not only to your business, but also to your customers and overall professional reputation.
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