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I received a scam email  from one of my own email addresses saying my router had been hacked and demanding a bitcoin payment or the hacker would tell everyone about the shocking adult sites that I have visited and that they would post views from my webcam. This computer has never visited any adult sites, shocking or otherwise, and plus I don't have a webcam. In hindsight I was tempted to bait them but realised that this could backfire somehow so I just deleted the email but it got me thinking - how do I stop my router getting hacked? Does Malwarebytes protect routers too?

 

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5 minutes ago, bluegiraffe said:

so I just deleted the email

That was the correct thing to do. You got the email because your email was breached in one or more of the many breaches over the years.

You can see if you email has been breached here https://haveibeenpwned.com/

You can also check your password there as well. If it has been breached, you will want to change the password on any site using it.

11 minutes ago, bluegiraffe said:

Does Malwarebytes protect routers too? 

Malwarebytes does not protect routers or email directly.


 

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A lot of older routers have vulnerabilities in your firmware. The second best thing to do is to factory-reset a router and install fresh firmware on it, but some back doors may still be present following a factory reset and firmware update depending on the model of router, so the first best thing to do is to get a new router entirely and make sure that you always have up-to-date firmware on it. And yes, always change the default password.

If you are willing and able to fork over additional dosh, then I'd also suggest getting a hardware firewall setup to protect your network equipment, and sticking to wired connections whenever possible.

Fun fact: I received that exact same email in the past, which is what actually prompted me to start looking into cybersecurity. Even if you've already changed your password, you will still receive that email. It is not actually sent from within your account, but the sender is obfuscated to trick the server into thinking that it was sent from your account.

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Guest T31KKS

avast antivirus free done a scan on my pc and said that my ip address was exposed and that hackers and anyone with a bit of know how can record everything im doing from sending emails to my banking details aswell as what im looking at? I have malwarebytes paid version aswell as windows defender they saying for 60 for two years they can encrypt my ip so that its not discoverable. Can  my malwarebytes not stop this AND PROTECT ME AS THATS WHAT I THOUGHT I WAS PAYING FOR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Malwarebytes isn't a VPN (that's what would be used to 'encrypt your IP', which is much more of a privacy issue than a security one unless you are on public Wi-Fi), nor is it a firewall, though they do offer a free firewall here since Malwarebytes acquired Binisoft, the makers of Windows Firewall Control.

Different layers of security and privacy protection serve different purposes, and Malwarebytes' main purpose is to protect from malware, exploits, Trojans, rootkits, malicious websites/servers (including command and control servers used by malicious botnets and malicious hackers along with phishing sites, malvertisements, and sites known to host malicious content/scams), as well as ransomware.  In addition to that, it also protects against PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs) which includes bundled software, toolbars, adware, spyware, junk/undesirable software such as registry cleaners, driver updaters, so-called 'system performance optimizers' etc.  To that extent Malwarebytes does protect your privacy, however as I mentioned, a VPN it is not, nor is it a firewall, both of which would be more suited for 'hiding your IP address'; in fact, one of the best things to have in that regard isn't actually found in any software at all; it's a hardware firewall, which virtually every modern router includes by default, so things like 'port stealthing' and blocking of unauthorized/unsolicited inbound traffic (such as any that might originate from a malicious hacker's PC or botnet portsniffing to try and find vulnerable/open ports/targets on the web) are of little concern as long as your router's firewall is properly configured (many ISP's also include routing functionality in their hardware modems, so if this is the type of device you use to connect to the net then you may contact your ISP or dialin directly to the device to view its firewall configuration software and settings through your web browser on your home network).

There's a great thread/discussion on this very subject here and you can learn more about VPN's, what they are and how they work by reading this article.  Another area that might interest you is DNS security/privacy.  You can learn more about that here.

One more thing with regards to online privacy/security along the lines of a VPN etc. that might interest you is the TOR browser.  It's a special build of Mozilla Firefox designed to hide users online while browsing the web and help anonymize their browsing habits to prevent them being tracked/monitored online.

You can also take measures within your normal web browser to further protect yourself and your privacy including changing security settings, modifying how cookies are handled and changing how plugins/add-ons/extension run so that they must ask for permission first.  You can also install a good ad blocker, privacy protection extension or similar tool, and in fact Malwarebytes currently has one in beta testing which is available for both Chrome (and other Chromium based browsers such as SRWare Iron and Vivaldi) as well as Mozilla Firefox.  You can learn more and download it at the following links:

Chrome
Firefox

It was designed to work well alongside the Web Protection in Malwarebytes 3 and takes things a step further by blocking many ads, tracking servers (to protect privacy), clickbait links/sites, as well as new behavior based blocking for unknown tech support scam sites and other common types of malicious sites that might not yet be in the domain/IP/URL block lists used by Malwarebytes Web Protection.

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A few simple steps...

  • Disable acceptance of ICMP Pings
  • Change the Default Router password using a Strong Password
  • Use a Strong WiFi password on WPA2 using AES  encryption
  • Disable Remote Management
  • Is the Router Firmware up-to-date ?
  • Specifically set Firewall rules to BLOCK;   TCP and UDP ports 135 ~ 139 and 445

 

 

Edited by David H. Lipman
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Hi everyone and thank for all the replies. I'm not a techie so some (or most) was straight over my head but I'm trying to do some reading on it all. On the subject of ad blockers, I've never had one but some sites block me from viewing unless I disable an ad blocker. It's normally some news sites which I presume are behind a pay wall anyway and many sites require you to accept cookies or else you cannot view them. I'm talking about shopping sites or really any sites it seems.  I usually end up accepting the cookies just to get rid of the annoying pops ups about them and then clear them all when I've finished. Here in the UK we are now bombarded with popups on just about every website regarding cookies and privacy and even more so since the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) thing went live. So you spend ages clicking out of it all before you can view what you went there for. And don't get me started on intrusive ads....

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