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Netgear announces new cybersecurity and privacy features for Armor product

Netgear is partnering with cybersecurity firm Bitdefender to improve the NETGEAR Armor system.
Written by Jonathan Greig, Contributor

Networking hardware giant Netgear has announced a slate of new cybersecurity and privacy-focused features for one of its most popular products.

The Netgear Armor security product, which is built into most routers like Orbi and Nighthawk, will now come with new threat detection features designed specifically for smart appliances. 

The new features include sensitive data protection -- which blocks attempts to send login information, banking data, social security numbers and moreover encrypted networks -- as well as an anomaly detection tool that uses machine learning algorithms to monitor how your connected devices usually operate. The system blocks any activity that is considered "out of the ordinary."

Netgear Armor will also try to shield connected smart devices from bots and brute force attacks while also stopping denial-of-service attacks and protecting networks against malicious intrusions through exploits. 

Netgear Armor is available to customers who have certain Wi-Fi 6 routers, and the company said it planned to roll out the tools to a wider audience in the coming weeks. Right now, Netgear Armor is free for 30 days and then costs $99.99 for a yearly subscription. 

David Henry, president of connected home products and services at Netgear, explained that it could be overwhelming for people to know what to do to keep themselves and their information safe with the explosion of connected devices in the home. 

Henry said the company added the features after realizing "that a new type of security solution was needed."

There are an array of threats facing smart TVs, smart thermostats, light switches, home theater systems, security cameras, game consoles, smart speakers, tablets, smartphones and other smart home gadgets.

The company cited a report from Bitdefender that found the number of vulnerabilities in smart TVs and cameras grew precipitously between 2019 and 2021. 

Netgear said in a statement that the security system is built into the router and eliminates "the need and cost for multiple security subscriptions or software." The company also offers a cybersecurity program for devices and computers along with the subscription. 

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