The malware, dubbed ZuoRAT, can access the local LAN, capture packets being transmitted on the device and stage man-in-the-middle attacks through DNS and HTTPS hijacking, according to researchers from Lumen Technologies’ threat-intelligence arm Black Lotus Labs.

Most SOHO users rarely ever review the security of their internet routers either at home or in their small office environment.  This article brings a much-needed attention to the security of one of the most important IT assets which often fall into unconscious neglect.  See our accompanying recommendations list to help bolster the security of your SOHO router.

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Basic Secure Router Configuration Short-list

  • Change the password used to access the router. Anything but the default should be OK, but don’t use a word in the dictionary.

  • If your Wi-Fi network(s) is using the default password, change it, even if it appears to be random. A Wi-Fi password should be at least 16 characters long. More…

  • If you are using a default WiFi network name (SSID) change it. When choosing network names, don’t identify yourself. More…

  • Wi-Fi encryption should be at least WPA2 (with AES, not TKIP) or WPA3 or both. More…

  • Turn off WPS.  More…

  • Turn off UPnP

  • Use a password protected Guest Network whenever possible, not just for guests but for IoT devices too.
  • If the router has a web interface, Remote Administration is probably off, but since this is so very dangerous, take the time to verify that it is disabled. If the router is administered with a mobile app and a cloud service, disabling remote access to the router is unchartered territory.

  • Port forwarding is an opened door (technically an open TCP/IP port). Poke around the router configuration to make sure there is no port forwarding going on. There is a small chance that something on your network needs a port to be forwarded, but every forwarded port is a security risk.
  • For years, turning off IPv6 (IP version 6) was on the long list below, but as of August 2021, I think it belongs here on the short list too. Very very few people need it and it was recently disclosed that there is a possible security issue with it.

  • Periodically check for new firmware. At some point you will go a year or two, or more, without any updates. That’s when it is time for a new router.