Netgear password vulnerability could lead to botnet style attacks
Netgear has announced a patch for software vulnerabilities in over 30 devices that can allow hackers access to the router password. The vulnerability gives attackers access to the router’s password recovery system in order to steal login credentials, giving them full access to the device and all of its settings.
These vulnerabilities can be exploited in two ways. If the attacker has physical access they can then access the router and exploit the vulnerabilities locally. The second and more dangerous way is that the vulnerability can be exploited remotely. Netgear routers come with the capability of remote management- where a user can access their router from outside of their network. Remote management is turned off on NETGEAR routers by default; however, if you own one of these devices, you should double check your settings to make sure this feature is indeed turned off.
After ensuring remote management is off, check your administration panel for a firmware update to see if there is a patch available. Netgear has stated that 31 of their routers are vulnerable and, of those, 18 have been patched. You can visit their support page to find out which routers are affected and download the firmware patch.
This type of vulnerability could give attackers access to not only your router, but also everything that is connected to it. In October of 2016, we reported on a massive cyber attack that created a botnet out of connected devices. That botnet then attacked one of the largest DNS server companies in the world which took many popular, mainstream websites and services offline for hours. This issue could help facilitate more of those types of attacks.
Protect what you can:
The best way to defend all of your devices is to protect what comes in contact with your network. The router is essentially the front door to your online world. Over the past year at Norton, we've been keeping a close eye on the Internet of things threat landscape. We are seeing that IoT devices are now being attacked on an average of every two minutes. As a result, we're proud to announce the brand new Norton Core router. Available for pre-order now, Norton Core is your “Digital Deadbolt” to your connected home. The first and only high performance, secure router with Norton protection bundled into it.
Another important way to get ahead of the bad guys is to participate in your own Internet security. Educate yourself about the threats out there and how they can affect you. Use security software, research your devices and secure them, and tell your friends to do the same! When more of us stay protected together, attackers will have fewer targets to take advantage of.