The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.
In today’s fast moving internet connected world it’s hard for us to keep up, but it isn’t just hard for us to keep up, our gadgets are lagging behind too! There have been countless stories in the news (an ever growing problem) about cyber attacks, we are practically living with cyber warfare on a daily basis – it just doesn’t always affect us directly (yet). Anyone remember a few years back when a website called Insecams shined light on a super serious exploit with popular camera brands (including Panasonic, Linksys, Sony, TPLink, Foscam, and more) that affected 73,000 cameras, essentially giving everyone on the site a very public screening of their private camera footage. Don’t let that be you! While you might not own one of those poorly developed security cameras that are connected to wifi that are prone to being hacked, but who’s to say that new smart device you hook up to your wifi enabled smarthome doesn’t forget an update or two down the road, and open the door for hackers (or who knows!) to spy on your family – scary stuff.
Smart devices cannot always be running the latest up to date software or firmware though, there are too many things that could go wrong between your end and that company – it could go out of business, discontinue the product, or just be bad at security. Security should be in your hands. The problem is that not everyone is tech savvy enough, to be able to operate their router, and keep their network safe.
Today we have a review of a very special home network security product made specifically for this purpose. Cujo.
What is Cujo?
CUJO is a smart firewall for the connected home, designed to bring business-level security to the home network. This one device will secure all devices connecting to the WiFi router. CUJO detects and blocks malicious sites, viruses, and hacks. Think of it like antivirus for your entire network. Plus, CUJO lets you control what your kids access online and keep them safe.
In layman’s terms – plug Cujo into your wifi router (yes, it’s only a matter of plugging in 2 cords – power cord and one cord into your router’s open Ethernet port).
Why do you need Cujo?
Put very simply – because it’s simple. It is so easy to set Cujo up. It set’s itself up even! It guards every device connected to your network. It gives you easy to access parental controls. You can control it and check in on it via a mobile app at home or on the go. It’s fast, doesn’t slow down your network. My home network is rather complex, so it took me a little extra to get it setup, but I was very impressed with Cujo for a few reasons.
Setting Up Cujo
As I said Cujo sets itself up – or at least it tries to. Since my network is pretty complex i’ll give it the benefit of the doubt – Cujo ran a few attempts to set itself up, but it couldn’t update my router settings (which is probably good). What it was trying to do, was turn off the DHCP server on my router, and take that function over. After a few failed attempts it guided me through how to do it myself, and it looked like it DID actually do it, but the router needed to be restarted to take affect.
Even if I hadn’t been able to figure that out (most people probably couldn’t) I was pretty amazed at the Cujo app on my android phone (download it here) – there are so many support options! Real life, honest to god support! They have chat buttons, email buttons, and even…. get this… VIDEO CHAT buttons that connect you directly with a REAL LIFE person.
Cujo is a pretty mello chap, but when he isn’t setup correctly, or detecting some security risk, he looks quite serious.
I clicked on video chat when I had an issue just to check it out, and then closed it – and they EMAILED ME saying that they saw I tried to get in touch, and asked if I had any questions? So easy to get in touch with them, unrealistically easy. Which makes this an easy buy for anyone not tech savvy that is worried about their network security. ANYONE could get this setup with that many options for support. Top notch.
After just a few minutes Cujo was happy and all setup, and we were happily reviewing the data it was creating in our app!
Reading The Data – Getting To Know Cujo
Once you get a feel for Cujo, it’s pretty easy to get around. You can view devices (which auto populate within 48 hours) connected to your network, you can view threats (which had started racking up in my account after a few days) from random botnets or websites trying to access your computer/devices that seem malicious, you can even view access control options and turn on/off internet for specific devices on the network.
There are even advanced parental controls such as internet filters, time limits, and social media monitoring.
bottom line is that this is a parents dream, plug and play, no college courses or stressful troubleshooting involved – protect your network, protect your family, keep your kids out of trouble on the internet. Very worth the modest investment of $250 which would probably be one home network configuration bill if you are the type that hires out tech help from the likes of local computer shops.
So what’s all of this cost? What is this, the Price is Right? Just $250 for the Cujo smart firewall, the subscription service that keeps you up to date and safe, actually is free! Yep, free – best price ever.
After testing cujo, we love it – and not just because our kids think it’s cute (which it totally is). We give this a solid 8.5/10 on the rating scale – good value, well designed product, top notch support, and we know that the team behind Cujo will keep innovating and updating the product most likely via software or firmware updates so we know Cujo will be a good deal for years to come. It’s a good investment as home security beaches are soon to become the next “Nightmare” story that you hear daily on the news, so if you have invested in a lot of smart devices you’d really be silly to pass up on an opportunity to keep them safe with an easy device like Cujo.
Stay tuned to InfiniGEEK for more tech reviews and smarthome tips!
Have you tried Cujo? How did you like it? Any impressions or tips you want to share? Share in the comments below – thanks for reading!
Cujo Smart Firewall Review
We think that Cujo is on the right track – the market needed an easy to use firewall solution that could just plug into a router. The only negatives we see is that it’s a bit too simplistic, more options would be best for power users, but that could alienate it’s market of non tech savvy consumers. Perhaps a pro version is in order, but for now Cujo is just alright with us.