Current and Future Router Support for IoT Devices and Security

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New member
Sep 30, 2020
I have a suggestion for a future topic on SN, which is particularly appropriate in this Covid era and the work from home model, to cover Home/Enterprise router IoT connectivity and the range of protocols supported including WiFi, Zigbee, Bluetooth, Thread and additional security features.

I know you have included various solutions for IoT connectivity in previous episodes but this topic should look at the new range of routers for example from Amazon (eero), TP-Link, Netgear and Google and the specific security features offered ( such as 3rd party malware scanning) to segment, protect and monitor the various device classes, incuding Work, IoT and Family devices. You could also expand the show to include VPN connectivity and any other options you see fit.

It´s just a suggestion and if anybody has any additional items to add, feel free to comment.

Good idea, although both Steve and padresj have covered it thoroughly in the past before with their '3 dumb routers' or similar podcasts.

The issue with these router configurations is that while in theory they may claim to segment the networks or do various IOT protection related things, in practice it's very different. Many routers don't do what they claim to do, and often the UI options can be confusing, and mislead people into thinking that the router does things that it doesn't. For example, I've seen supposed "Guest Networks" on routers Eg. TPLink which claim to provide isolation, but actually don't. I've recently owned a TPLink router which claimed to have a "Guest Network", and there was a switch to "Enable Guest Isolation" but it actually dropped only ICMP packets, whereas a nmap scan perfectly found all devices and open ports.

Furthermore, some IOT devices actually need to see other devices Eg. Smartphone to work I.E. be configured.
Worse yet, other IOT devices Eg. some media boxes, will think that you're streaming over the internet and use up your bandwidth in order to provide you content.

Just some thoughts and things to be wary about. It's important when using these "built in" solutions that they be thoroughly tested before being deployed. Therefore, the simplest, 0 configuration setup is still what Steve suggested originally.