[Article has been updated to include the response for the clarifications we have on the Trend Micro Home Network Security box. ]
Trend Micro launches its latest cyber-security product for Singapore consumers – Trend Micro Home Network Security. This nifty black box protects all of our connected devices at home against network intrusions, web threats and identity theft. Importantly, it also includes parental control features to regulate children’s online activities and make sure they browse the web safely.
- Today’s circumstances: 20% of Singaporean homes are equipped with smart, connected devices – a number that is predicted to grow to one in three (32%) by 2023 (Statista). Families are using all types of gadgets to access the internet, and children surf the web for longer periods of time.
- The burgeoning problem: We love being connected, but we often neglect to protect our smart devices against cyberattacks.
- Solution: With Trend Micro Home Network Security (HNS), users can easily manage and monitor all smart devices in real time via a smartphone app (see attached dashboard screenshot). Devices include gaming consoles, smart lightbulbs, security cameras, and more. To date, 80% of HNS stations have blocked web threats.
Trend Micro Home Network Security is available in Singapore from mid-July online and at Harvey Norman stores at S$299 RRP (includes Home Network Security station and two-year subscription).
The announcement above needed more clarifications. There are more questions that begs to be answered;
- Where do you place this box – before or after the router? Assuming connection to ONT fibre boxes in most homes in Singapore.
- There is only one ethernet port on the TrendMicro HNS, this can only mean, the box is placed after the router (connected to the router)
- If it is connected to the router, it will itself be part of the network, or a node of the network, like the other devices be it mobile, computers or IOT. How does this arrangement enable the HNS box to intercept bad internet packets, or does it intercept all packets on the network? How is that possible in a switched network environment?
- If it is monitoring all the data on the switched network, does it also monitor and identify encrypted packets (SSL or VPN)? If it does, how is it able to?
- What does the HNS box or Trend Micro, do with the information it monitors on the network?
This post will be updated once there are responses to these queries.
Here’s the response from Trend Micro on the Home Network Security box.
- Home Network Security connects to the router and works alongside it to ensure the data passing in and out of the network is safe. You can also refer to the installation instructions here.
- & 3. Home Network Security works alongside the router. It filters incoming and outgoing traffic with advanced deep packet inspection to provide an extra layer of protection for the home network and smart devices like game consoles, smart TVs and smart home gadgets. In order to scan network traffic, HNS is configured by default to use the ARP protocol. HNS can also be configured to become the DHCP server in the network.
- Same as #2.
- Even if a device is using VPN, HNS can still prevent and block inbound network attacks. For now, VPN may block communications or pairing with the Home Network Security Station, which means web threat protection and parental controls settings can be bypassed. With that said, in a few weeks’ time, we will release a new VPN feature via app update that allows the users to identify which device on their network is masked with VPN.
- Trend Micro Home Network Security is a service that provides protection against network intrusions, web threats and identity theft for every device that you connect to the internet in your home. The powerful Home Network Security Station connects to your router to scan network traffic for threats. Home Network Security filters incoming and outgoing traffic with advanced deep packet inspection to provide an extra layer of protection for the home network.
From a data perspective: