If you’re a little concerned about what you or your family checks out online, and you’re an Optus broadband subscriber, a new service might interest you.
It can be hard to be a citizen of the web, a “netizen”, so to speak. Between the almost endless supply of scams that are constantly refreshed and out for your money, the malware, the ransomware, the fleeceware, and every other type of “ware” that’s trying to pull one over you, not to mention the cyber bullying and other risks online, it can be all too easy to forget that the web isn’t always a safe place.
Education can help, but if you’re worried about some of the people who may be browsing the web — say kids or family members — security solutions can be a big help, letting you have some of that peace of mind while a bit of software handles potential nasties for you.
If you’re a subscriber to an Optus broadband plan, however, that software might be something that can be built into the modem, as Optus and security company McAfee team up for a technology that monitors for malicious online threats at the router level.
It’s coming in a concept Optus calls “Optus WiFi Secure”, and is built into Optus modems, essentially monitoring the traffic going through a modem to prevent threats from taking hold. It means if you use it, WiFi Secure can essentially prevent security flaws and issues from creeping up over web browsing, but also over other devices, such as Internet of Things (IoT) devices, including security cameras, video doorbells, baby monitors, smart speakers, and anything else that’s connected, as well as phones, tablets, and game systems being used over WiFi.
The idea isn’t a completely new one, mind you, and is something you can find in various network routers and devices.
McAfee has previously teamed up with D-Link in the past for something similar, and while Norton offered a short lived router technology that did something similar, Trend Micro also offers a small network gadget that can be plugged into any router to do much the same. Linksys has even partnered with Trend Micro for a type of security with parental controls in its routers.
So the idea here isn’t tremendously new, though it’s one that can be switched on easily at the modem. In fact, Optus says that Optus WiFi Secure will be available to customers on the Optus Family Internet Plan for free, or for $5 per month extra on other Optus NBN plans.
Optus WiFi Secure is rolling out now, and thanks to it being a part of the modem, should be able to be switched on — or off — whenever a user wants it.