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Choosing the right router for SMBs and SOHOs

Nurdianah Md Nur | Nov. 5, 2015
Jai Thampi of Belkin Inc provides tips on what SMBs and SOHOs should consider before purchasing a router.

When should SMBs consider using enterprise-grade routers?
SMBs should consider using an enterprise-grade router if they are a growing business that will require advanced enterprise grade features or a business environment that would require more security features and functionality. They should know that there are vendors that design and build networking solutions including routers, switches and access points that are designed specifically for the SMB environment (meant for environments up to 100 users).  There are also consumer routers ideal for households -- for use with various number of devices and speeds -- as well as for enterprise -- for over 100 users. Many SMBs don't realise that there are purpose-built models for SMB environments so they think they have to purchase a consumer router or an enterprise version. 

Similar to any other tech tool, routers are susceptible to malwares. Earlier this year, there was a report saying that hackers were using home routers to launch DDOS attacks. How should SMBs and SOHOs secure their routers?
It is recommended that users upgrade their firmware regularly to ensure they have the latest security fixes and other bug fixes. They should also purchase device security software such as Trend Micro, MacAfee or others. It's important to know that a consumer router provides a network address translation (NAT) firewall that protects at first line of defence. However, when  you start opening ports for a web server or gaming connection, you start opening up holes for hackers to come in. Getting security software for laptops and devices will provide another layer of security to protect from virus and Trojan horses. However if security is of utmost importance, look for routers that provide additional security advancements such as a unified threat management (UTM) firewall route


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