Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Re: Hiding Arlo Wi-Fi network

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Apprentice
Apprentice

I believe that the Arlo topoly consists of a dedicated Wi-Fi network, distinct from the main home or office Wi-Fi network, in order to enhance security. That is great. But if that is the case, why does the Arlo SSID show up in the list of Wi-Fi networks? That is inviting hackers. This is advertising a vector for attack to skilled thiefs, who can sit in a van away, take the time to remotely hack the Arlo Wi-Fi and once that has been compromised or disabled (as easily as through packet flooding), then then can go easily do their robbery, locate the Arlo hub and grab the SD card to ensure nothing was left. The concept of advertising the SSID sounds absurd, especially given it is meant to be a dedicated Wi-Fi network, which implies the user does not even need to use it, configure it and access it, as it is merely used internally by the proprietary Arlo topology. Or, is there a way to keep that SSID hidden (which we well know will still allow it to operate, but with significantly reduced visibility)?

Model: VMS5440 | Arlo Ultra 4 Camera Kit
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Guru Guru
Guru
As noted many times both here and on a large number of tech support websites, hiding the SSID has no effect on security. The best you could call it it is "security by obscurity". Anyone with a WiFi sniffer would find the SSID in a heartbeat. Like any WiFi network, a strong passphrase is the security as well as using at least WPA2.

If you can hack in, we'd all love to know.
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Apprentice
Apprentice

 

Let me provide a bit of clarification as to why the importance of not losing sight of the big picture.
 
And we'll leave performance and congestion out of the picture here.
 
Hiding the SSID does HAVE everything to do with security.
 
- True, what it does NOT do, is block experienced, skilled hackers.
- However, what it DOES do, is get rid of 90% of the rest (hacker-wannabies). It is just a speed-bump, but it is one.
 
Broadcasting the SSID essentially tells everyone in the neighborhood (not just hackers): "Hey, the neighbor has an Arlo!"
 
The reality about true security is, if you don’t need it, don’t use it. End of story.
This is advertising how you are secured, instead of just... not saying much. 
 
Is there a need to keep the SSID broadcasting? Sure, keep it. Don't need it? Hide it!
If you do security properly, then every little bit counts, period.
 
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Apprentice
Apprentice
The ability to hide the SSID is a must and needs to happen.

Having the SSID visible for a security system is the dumbest idea ever, letting people in wifi range know you've got an Arlo system, be it thieves or your neighbors is ridiculous.

Please sort this out Arlo!
Model: VMS5340 | Arlo Ultra 3 Camera Kit
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Prodigy
Prodigy

Amen to hiding it.  They don't need to be a hacker or wannabe, anybody with a cell phone knows a Arlo is there, you might as well hang a sign up.  Just on a news story in fact how if they know you have a system they look for a way to disable it, as easy as cutting your internet cable.  Sure a pro will find it anyway but most local crimes aren't pros.

 

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Guru Guru
Guru

@Redpower187 wrote:
The ability to hide the SSID is a must and needs to happen.


A "hidden" SSID isn't really hidden - the network itself (and the "hidden" SSID) is still easily found if you know how to look.  This is a long-obsolete wifi security mechanism, that no longer has security benefit

The cost of hiding the SSID is that the camera will take longer to connect to the base - which could have an impact on battery life, and will create additional delay on recordings and the start of live streaming.

 

 Another possibility (without the downsides of SSID hiding) is for Arlo to simply change the SSID name so it doesn't obviously identify that the network is arlo.  A meaningless name string (for instance a numeric string) would do that.

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Apprentice
Apprentice
Happy for the SSID to be visible as long as it is not called ARLO_VMB
Model: VMS5340 | Arlo Ultra 3 Camera Kit
Initiate
Initiate

Yes I agree SSID must be hidden or changed from ARLO_VM. I have had Arlo Gen 1 for years and recently  bought a Pro 2 set not too long ago and as of this past weekend I just started noticing the SSID for both units pop up? Did a firmware upgrade do this? I dont like the fact that his shows. Yes  you all (Arlo reps) repeatedly says "Arlo does not hide the Arlo base station SSID because it provides very little security. Tools are commonly available to discover hidden SSIDs." but the point is that we don't want anyone knowing we have a camera system. A 10 year old can easily look at what SSID"s popup on their smartphone and easily see ARLO_VM and know that there are cameras around.  So if a 10 year old can do that think of what a potential thief can easily know. Point is I am not concerned of getting hacked but more concerned with ANYONE knowing i have a camera system and to the point where they can even then be curios and look around the outside of my house for cameras or even know how to avoid being seen by them. PLEASE change SSID or get rid of it. I am now considering returning this new Pro2 because of this concern. Thanks.

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Guru Guru
Guru

@insub wrote:

... you all (Arlo reps) repeatedly says 


I want to make it clear that I don't represent Arlo in any way.  My opinions here are my own - I can not and do not speak for them.

 

Personally I'd be fine with them changing the SSID to make it less obvious that Arlo is in use.  I wouldn't hide it, because I do some see downside in doing that (as I pointed out earlier).

 

Though my cameras are all visible - so I'm also fine if they leave the SSID as it is.

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Aspirant
Aspirant

Hiding the SSID might not enhance security re skilled thieves, but it certainly reduces the clutter when choosing a network from other devices.  I have separate wireless networks for specific devices in my home.  The visible Arlo SSID does nothing for me except clutter the list.  I recognize that hiding and changing it would require re-syncing the cameras, but that would be ok with me.  I abhor equipment that I can't control, and this falls into that category.  If this had been clearly stated by Arlo before my purchase, I would have found other video solutions.  Arlo seems quite unresponsive to many support issues.

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Guru Guru
Guru

@DavidWK wrote:

The visible Arlo SSID does nothing for me except clutter the list. 


Hiding it would reduce the battery life of the cameras.

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Guide
Guide

i'm agree, it's very important for me tha arlo give us the possibility to change the ssid or at least change the default ssid name with something completeley anonymous (like a series of numbers).

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Prodigy
Prodigy

If hiding i is an issue, it still does not have to advertise it's your arlo. People use millions of names to identify their routers, it doesn't have to be your name address and birth date

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Guru Guru
Guru

@LandJS wrote:

If hiding is an issue, it still does not have to advertise it's your arlo. 


Yeah, I agree with that. 

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