The BT HomeHub and your business


Ever wondered why firewalls and routers for business are more expensive than the ones you get free with your internet connection at home?

Ever thought that the free box that BT send, or the low cost “SOHO” router from the local PC store will be sufficient to protect your business network?

After all, it has a “firewall” menu and it is set to “on”. Surely that is secure enough right?


SOHO (small office / home office) devices are designed to be easy to set up, and make it easy to get devices like PCs, Smart TVs and VOIP phones working. SOHO devices are designed, tested, and built to a tiny budget to be sold at very low cost, or given away free by ISPs.

There is little consideration, time, or budget given to the security of the router, and as a result almost all of the low cost SOHO routers tested in modern tests have proven to be vulnerable.

In one recent test including 14 devices from 8 well known vendors, 100% of the devices tested were shown to be insecure, and over 56 different vulnerabilities were identified across the devices. The full technical details, and the models of the routers tested can be found here.

In addition to vulnerabilities in the routers it transpires that one very popular router, the BT Home Hub, simply lies about the security that it provides your network.

Even if you turn the firewall on, and set it to block all unsolicited incoming traffic, it still accepts incoming traffic on port 5060 (the standard VOIP port). No matter how you configure the firewall it will always allow unrestricted access to port 5060! No doubt this is done to make the setup nice and easy for BT VOIP customers. However a Block All rule, should block everything, the fact that it doesn’t is a massive oversight by BT and a glaring security hole in your network!

If you have a VOIP phone system on your network, this flaw allows attackers unrestricted access through your firewall, giving them free reign to attack your phone system. If successful this would allow the attackers to use your VOIP service to make long distance calls at your expense.

This happened recently and has been reported on in detail here.

If you are interested in securing your business network, and are unsure of the most suitable router and firewall for you, please feel free to give us a call and speak to one of our friendly consultants.