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what is upnp

Understanding UPnP and Its Associated Risks

what is upnp

These days, connecting your TV to your sound bar, and using your smartphone to control both, is normal. We no longer need to connect devices such as our routers, printers, and gaming consoles using wires, if they are Wi-Fi enabled, then they can connect to each via UPnP (Universal Plug and Play). 

UPnP service has made it so much more convenient for us to connect our devices wirelessly on a single local network, which enables them to discover each other and automatically connect using standard protocols such as TCP/IP HTTP, and DHCP. However, this convenience comes with significant network security risks.

What Does UPnP Do

When you connect two or more devices on your Wi-Fi network, you use Universal Plug and Play. How it works is that when each device joins the web, it assigns itself an IP address and a name that it will appear under on your network. This enables it to automatically interact with other devices and inform them of its capabilities without any intervention from you.

UPnP service has removed the hassle of configuring each device manually to connect with another, allowing us to benefit from using home automation devices. Home automation devices make it possible for us to turn on our lights, turn on the A/C, control curtains, etc. while at the office or anywhere else remotely from an external device. This is possible because UPnP allows devices to automatically open ports on a router through port forwarding.


What Makes UPnP Service Dangerous On a Router

This service in itself is not dangerous to use, however, when infected devices are connected to your router then danger looms nigh. 

Malware is what could spoil this beautiful and harmonious connection, as it can increase the possibilities of DDoS attacks. Ensuring that you only connect safe devices using UPnP service, will guarantee that your network remains unharmed and safe to use.

When using UPnP, devices recognize each other without human intervention, making it easy for this connection to be infiltrated by malware-infected devices without you noticing. Devices that connect with yours may be used to modify router administrative login credentials maliciously; change your DNS server settings to divert you to clone websites that steal user credentials, including your banking details. Cyber Attackers can use UPnP port forwarding to their external servers on the dark web or equally port forward the router web administration details.

These are but a few things that can be risky about using UPnP service, it’s therefore imperative that we employ cybersecurity tools that can mitigate such risks and ensure that we are sufficiently protected from all sorts of attacks.

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Using VPN to Make UPnP Service Safe

A virtual Private Network (VPN), establishes a safe and recognizable internet connection to use over a public network, making your internet traffic inaccessible to anyone external. With your online traffic hidden, random devices won’t be able to connect with your network or devices via UPnP service. This provides you with the power to choose and elect which to allow on your network, ensuring that your router only connects known and safe devices.

VPN Unlimited is part of the MonoDefense cybersecurity bundle that is highly reliable in providing agile, comprehensive protection against all forms of cyberattacks. Unlike free VPN services, VPN Unlimited encodes your traffic using its secure military-grade encryption protocol AES-256. VPN Unlimited uses high-speed servers to ensure your internet speed is never affected no matter which part of the world you connect from.

Information about browsing history, metadata, and server usage cannot be accessed by anyone except for you. VPN Unlimited does not store a record of your online activities, what you do online remains known to you alone, not even to your internet service provider. 

UPnP service provides us with an efficient ecosystem that allows our devices to interact with each other conveniently and reliably via your router. VPN Unlimited will provide you with peace of mind, knowing that all risks associated with UPnP service will be combated. 

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