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NSA offers advice on securing your home network

The National Security Agency (NSA) of the United States has released instructions to assist remote employees in protecting their devices against attacks and securing their home networks. A lengthy range of suggestions are included in the handbook recently released by the intelligence branch of the Defense Department, including a summary advising teleworkers to make sure their hardware and software are up to date.

Also, remote employees are encouraged to frequently backup their data to prevent data loss and to unplug any equipment they aren’t using if it doesn’t need an ongoing Internet connection. You should also reboot your devices periodically, or schedule a restart, to further reduce the likelihood of non-persistent malware infection.

The NSA also advises utilizing a personal router that should always be updated rather than the default modem or router given by the ISP, which could not always receive security upgrades. “The entrance to your home network is through your router. It is more vulnerable to compromise without adequate security and patching, which can also cause other networked devices to become affected” – NSA stated.

“The routing devices on your home network should be updated to the latest patches, preferably through automatic updates, to eliminate vulnerabilities and increase security.” In order to ensure that routers continue to receive security updates to fix recently found vulnerabilities that attackers could use in attempts to enter a network, routers should also be replaced as soon as possible, ideally before they reach their end-of-life date.

“In the telework era, hackers and nation-state actors may utilize your home network as a point of access to steal important data. By protecting our devices and networks and practicing safe online conduct, we can reduce this danger ” Neal Ziring, technical director for NSA cybersecurity, 2/28/23. When the NSA offers advice on securing your home network,

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