Hack Your Own IP Network: DIY Security Self-Audit

Although it is tempting to rely on your router’s firewall, taking a proactive rather than passive approach to managing the health of your IP network is strongly recommended. At No-IP, we take security seriously, especially outside forces try to hack your network.

Just last month in June, tech giant, ASUS, had to notify their users of at least nine security vulnerabilities in a few of their router models. Some of these vulnerabilities were fairly serious. For example, one of the issues was a memory corruption issue that would allow hackers to execute malicious code or launch DoS attacks.

Overwhelmed by which vulnerabilities need immediate attention or not? You can always take a look at the severity rating according to the NIST’s National Vulnerability Database. It is also a good place to check if your personal devices could potentially be exposed to a serious vulnerability.

Thankfully, you can perform a self-audit and manage your IP network in reverse: Hack it yourself to find the discrepancies. In this blog, we talk about hacking your own IP network to find holes in your cybersecurity.

Here are a number of ways you try to hack your own network:

Fake Phishing

Phishing Simulations are a great way of testing not just yourself, but the multiple users that you’ve allowed access to your IP network. For example, if you are a growing business, it is inevitable that you need to allow employees to have access to files in order to continue managing internal and external information. A simulation would include fake emails or messages to test your team to ensure they know what information is okay to open or not. Since phishing makes up the majority of security breaches, this is a great way of testing everyone, including yourself, has not become complacent. Companies like KnowBe4 provide this type of service.

Offense is a Good Defense

Launching a Breach and Attack Simulation (BAS) is a great way to see how your network holds up to malicious attacks. Many companies use Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to sniff out any possible vulnerabilities you might have, giving you a broad sweep of your network. This is especially handy for the constant bombardment of attacks and threats that companies face on a regular basis.

There are many different BAS tools Look here for a comprehensive list of different BAS tools to choose from.

Check the Perimeters

Security or vulnerability scanners are less a simulation and more a way of pinpointing possible attacks. There are different types of scans, for example network-based scans root out network security or vulnerable systems. Web application scans identify vulnerabilities like SQL injection, cross-site scripting, and cross-site request forgery. Depending on how expansive your network is, you might opt for one, or many different types of vulnerability scans.

Save your Arms and Legs

There are many robust and extensive cybersecurity simulations for larger companies that can afford to pay thousands of dollars. That doesn’t mean that if you are still expanding your network or have a modest number of devices, you cannot use these tools. There are some tools out there that are not only more cost-effective but easier to manage as well. Rapid7 provides an affordable risk analysis for as low as $1.62 per asset per month.

Create a Safe Space

Feeling nervous about hacking your network in real-time? Thankfully, there are ways to simulate a test cyberattack. Creating a virtual machine gives you a safe space to test out opening shady links, test VPNs, or any other software without impacting your host computer. A virtual machine is also a great way to simulate a cyberattack. There are programs you can use to manage your virtual machine, such as UTM, Parallels, and Virtual Box to name a few.

Mind Your Network

Here are some things you can do to ensure your network is healthy:

Mind Your Ports

If you were leaving the house, you wouldn’t leave your windows and doors open and risk outsiders coming in. Therefore, it is best practice to not have all your ports open in your router. Instead, be mindful of the services you expose to the internet. Any open port is a potential way for hackers to breach your network!

Timing is Everything

The most important thing is keeping your software updated. Set it to automatically update, or set a calendar reminder to check your software updates every 30 days. It is obviously easier for someone to hack a network that is rarely monitored or inconsistently managed.

Everyone can agree that finding out your IP network has a security breach is one of the worst feelings you can get in our modern world. It is nearly impossible not to rely on the internet in your personal or professional life. However, there is constantly a barrage of attacks and new hack techniques that hackers use to try any and all means of getting through your system, and sometimes people struggle to stay on top of all of them. Why not use “hacking” to your advantage and root out those vulnerabilities rather than wait around to be attacked? To learn more, check out No-IP’s Knowledge Base.