WHAT TCL Firewalla cybersecurity firewall
WHAT IT DOES This small home device (1.2-by-1.2-by-1-inch) sets up a security barrier around your home network. It plugs into your existing router and monitors all devices, including smartphones, tablets, computers, and smart home devices (it blocks outside access to your security cameras).
COST $108 (Firewalla Red), $179.99 (Firewalla Blue)
AVAILABLE FROM firewalla.com
WHAT’S HOT The simple plug-n-play setup is ideal, and you don't have to be an IT specialist to access more advanced settings. There's also no paid subscription service.
When activated, the Firewalla social hour blocks internet use and all major social networks for one hour with a simple tap of a button allowing for traditional face-to-face family time rather than FaceTime.
Apps (iOS and Android) monitor the activity you choose. Setup, including setting up a firewall around your network, is done automatically.
As mentioned, the setup takes little time, including advanced settings. The online Firewalla installation guide is easy to understand. Firewalla enables you to see who's on your system, sites being visited and which shouldn't be (such as gaming, gambling or adult sites) with full customization for website blocking. There's also a built-in VPN server for access when you're away from home.
Rules can be set to completely block sites, limit the access or cut off all internet access.
Alarm and app notifications can easily be set for big situations such as possible cyberattacks or as small as a video game being played on the network.
Every home and small business should have a Firewalla. It works that well.
WHAT'S NOT The VPN server setup can be complicated.