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Old 03-03-2018, 11:19 AM   #1
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Default Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

I have run away downloads by one or more of my devices on my home network as told to me by cable provider, resulting in huge overage charges. Over the last 3 months, I spiked at 4TB in one month! I'm up to 1.5TB already since Feb 16. I need to find out where it's coming from. I have their router/wifi device but they claim if can't track device usage. The cable company is no help, siting 'not responsible'. I've tried process of elimination but can't pinpoint the leak. I am also concerned it could be some sort of hack from the outside.

I am looking at getting a NetGear NightHawk AC1900 that appears to allow individual device traffic monitoring or I may be able to update firmware to do that.

Appreciate any comments/recommendations from the forum.
Thanks -
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Old 03-03-2018, 04:18 PM   #2
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

I don't know an awful lot about these sorts of problems but as far as I can se it can only come from three places. Either you are downloading that amount or your computer is compromised in some way or somone is hacking into your router. If you disconnect your computer from the internet then the downloads will stop if it is your computer. I would be looking at a complete clean reinstall of whatever OS you are using and changing all my passwords. There isn't a whole lot you can do with your router other than changing your wireless password if you are using wireless. That should keep anyone off your router. If you are using ethernet then consider turning off the wireless in your router.

Thats about all I can think of so hopefully someone will come up with some more suggestions. I have to say that your ISP doesn't sound very helpful but then most of them are not.
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Old 03-03-2018, 04:41 PM   #3
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

As pete said I'd start with changing your wifi password. That'll rule out the possibility of some neighbor using it. Most routers will at least log the host names of the devices connected to them. Often you can tell if there's some unusual device you don't recognize.

4TB is quite a bit, so you could try reintroducing a couple wifi devices at a time and then call your ISP and ask them to check for any unusual activity / high utilization. That could help you narrow it down.

I think getting a router with more traffic monitoring features is a good idea. Then you can find that out yourself.
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Old 03-05-2018, 12:07 PM   #4
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

have you checked the interface for the cable provider's router? they're usually pretty crappy, but they may have a feature that will let you see what ip address are being used.

Also, you can check what devices are on your network with an app like FING.
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:16 AM   #5
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

I have changed passwords and even replaced the cable modem/router twice. I had my own router and wifi for a long time till this stated happening. When I called the provider to assist they said they couldn't as I didn't have their equipment. So I got their router, in fact replaced twice because the first unit failed. The current one seems to be holding on although the problem still persists but not as bad. After 20 days I am only up to 2 TB, last month at this time was close to 4! I can access the router via telnet but it is not effective at all. They disable the manufacturer's access and put on their own and as a result it is indeed ... crappy! It doesn't even show all devices and give no QoS functionality at all. Pathetic! I've ordered a new Netgear AC1900 so I can monitor device activity and define QoS. I'm leaning towards a device issue at this point and not a hack but it's possible a device may have a worm or something opening up at odd hours. I appreciate the responses.
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:46 PM   #6
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

I think you've hit the nail on the head with your plan to be honest. If your current router can't analyse the issue, then it's a good place to get a new one.

This way at least you can get a bit more info about the device causing the issue.

If you have MAC address filtering you could give that a go, and limit usage to a couple of your devices which you use the most. You could also disable SSID broadcast on your device so you need to know the exact name, then change the password so people can't automatically using the old password.

The MAC addresses CAN be spoofed, but most people don't have the knowhow to get your MAC address, so this could be a solution.
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Old 03-09-2018, 11:58 AM   #7
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Default Re: Runaway Downloads on Home cable Network!

If your router won't list what clients are connected, download an app called Fing on your phone. It will scan your network and list what clients are connected via wifi or ethernet. I love it.
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