With the Internet of Things and home automation entering the consumer electronics mainstream, hackers now see the home network as a new target for their nefarious activity. Recently, the news reported a story of someone’s smart refrigerator getting hacked and sending spam emails all over the world. While probably an isolated incident, it still emphasizes the need for everyone to take the steps to protect their network, especially after installing a home automation system.
Because of this growing need, a company from the enterprise networking equipment market recently released a version of their Universal Threat Management (UTM) product aimed squarely at today’s smart home. If you are interested in protecting your wireless network — and appliances — from cyber criminals read on.
A Closer Look at the ZyXEL USG40HE
ZyXEL is a well known company in the enterprise network security space. Their USG40HE is a UTM device suitable for any robust home network and comes optimized for a Home Automation setup. Consider the USG40HE to be a firewall on steroids, with a host of other functionality typical of something normally seen in a business’s server room.
This UTM for home users offers high-end intrusion detection and prevention functionality able to secure your network and devices against malware and other web-delivered malicious content. Embedded application intelligence prioritizes content you deem important while blocking or restricting those hogging your valuable bandwidth. Additionally, you are also able to filter any web content you don’t want your kids seeing.
Extra anti-spam and anti-virus functionality is available for an additional cost, and here’s hoping these features become standard after the home UTM market matures. Since this is a device with more complexity compared to a typical firewall included with a router, buyers receive a free 30 minute concierge phone call to make sure everything is configured properly.
A High-end Firewall to Secure a High-end Home Network
If you enjoy tinkering with computers and your network, managing the USG40HE definitely won’t be too difficult, but novice users should study all included documentation. ZyXEL also offers support and an online knowledge base if necessary. Remember, this UTM for home users is essentially an enterprise-level firewall, so some additional study is required to get the most out of the unit.
As the Internet of Things becomes more popular, expect additional high-end network security devices like the USG40HE to be commonplace. If your home network warrants the best possible security, this is a product worthy of your further exploration.