More and more, with the growth of the IoT (Internet of things), we are adding to our network. Don’t take me wrong, being able to see who is at your front door, or adjusting your thermostat on the way home is great, but these things need Internet access. Unfortunately, these end-points or nodes aren’t always secure. In fact, there was a case where Ring Doorbell had a vulnerability that if someone had access to the doorbell unit they could get your Wi-Fi password, which would give them access to your whole network. Some brands, like Ring, are on top of it and patch known issues quickly, but some—not so much. My suggested solution is network segregation. This could include using a guest network on your wireless router, or multiple routers and segregated networks via multiple devices. In my case, I went overkill with the latter option—someone commented on the number of routers I have in place. The idea of network segregation is even if someone has access to one of your IoT devices, it should not bounce over to your home network. So if you use IoT devices and want to segregate your network but don’t know how, give me a call.
So I can count a few times in the past month that bad hardware has made an appearance. The issues is for some people this can make a Tech look bad. Now if you have unlimited funds then it is easy to fix, but I know I don’t have unlimited funds do you. (If you do let me know I will give you my address and you can cut me a check.) So let’s take a look at some examples shall we. Now these are actually issues not just made up, I have two, they have to do with networking. So I go over to a friend’s house to do some simple network work. They had a default set Router/AP so I made 3 changes. 1. Changed login name and password. 2. Changed SSID name and password. 3 combined the SSIDs for 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. Well all was good for a bit , but then the 2.4 GHz quit working, so I go back and separate as asked and after a day the 2.4 GHz quit working quit again. So this is a hardware issue, and lucky this was a friend and I could easy explain what was happening. But some would look at it as you combined the broadcast IDs so you broke it. This bring us to another issue, so another friend was having what is a DNS issues, DNS standing for Domain Naming Service. Quick explanation on this, so the web works on IP addressing mostly IPv4 (IPv6 is right around the corner said someone 20 years ago.). So you need to go to http://www.x86pcrepair.com/ well at this writing the IP address is 126.96.36.199. So let me ask, is it easier to remember the IP address or the FQDN (Full Qualified Domain Name)? Quick test what is the IP address for https://www.google.com (188.8.131.52) or https://www.facebook.com (184.108.40.206)? *Added note these are server farms with load balancing so you might get another IP Address if you check. So you can see how the DNS is pretty important. Well this one network was not providing the DNS correctly, but only on the Wireless. So wait this just doesn’t make sense. Well the WI-FI is simply not broadcasting the DNS with the DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) broadcast. So how can this be fixed? Well the two biggest options would be to do a backup of the SOHO (Small Office Home Office) router and Flash the firmware to see if that corrects it, or simply replace it. This could work for both instances. But this isn’t a simply fix, see to back it up and flash the firmware it you would need to know what was happening and anytime you flash a firmware you have the potential of bricking the device, or basically making it not good anymore. Plus this process could take some time, so I believe in a once of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Replacing is easy, but you have to look to see if it is under warranty, if so you need to call the manufacturer whom will probably make you run many of the some things over again, before they replace it. Or if not just go out and buy a new one. (Unlimited funds people hint, hint I will give you my address and you can cut me a check.) So the end of this post is to simply let the Tech explain that the issues is hardware and it might not be their fault.
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