Very Small Networks Need Protection, Too

From the Nov. 2006 Issue

Small networks, both wired and wireless, are popping up everywhere. Offices of every size have more than one computer. The typical family, especially with children living at home, has more than one computer. For security and protection, most users of small networks have installed software products on each computer from the likes of Symantec, Zone Alarm and McAfee. These work well, but they require individual licenses, installation and maintenance for each computer.

Along comes D-Link, a long-time manufacturer of networking solutions, with a hardware device for Internet security that can manage multiple computers throughout a single network. The SECURESPOT (DSD-150) is a small MP3 player-sized box that is cable connected between the broadband modem and wired or wireless router. This device provides security for all computers on the network, including anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-popup and other security software programs.

Installation is easily handled with a series of preference screens for identifying each computer on the network, scheduling Internet access times and other options, including parental controls. Each individual computer can be locked for specific content and unknown e-mail senders, and the computer’s activity can be tracked. Installation takes just a few minutes and requires a short power down of both the router and the modem until the SECURESPOT is connected between them. Installation is an easy task for the average accountant computer user. Updates for virus and standard security features are provided through an annual license. With a broadband connection, this task is easily handled on a continuous basis.

Tax and accounting professionals can ponder about using the SECURESPOT in multiple locations within their office depending on how the internal network is configured. In addition, this device is very price effective for any SMB client office along with their client’s home installations.

The key benefit of SECURESPOT is to provide consistent and continuous protection for every computer on the network. For example, when you bring your personal home laptop into the office, a few preference settings protects the laptop computer in the same manner that all other computers are protected without additional software installations. Keep in mind that it is the network that supports and protects each computer that is attached.

The mobile practitioner cannot take full advantage of SECURESPOT. While the computers attached to the network are very secure, when using the laptop on the road at a client’s office, your local coffee bar or hotel, other security protections will be needed. You can buy a second SECURESPOT and use the D-Link Bridge to maintain security.

MSRP is $99.99, including one-year licenses for up to four computers. The annual update after the first year for up to four computers is $79.99 per year. For each additional computer, the annual license fee is $19.99.

I like products that work out of the box and that work directly, and I like products that can be customized to fit your specific environment. SECURESPOT is one of those devices. 


Richard Oppenheim, CPA.CITP, has used and written about technology for more than four decades. He currently provides advice through the Oppenheim Business Group. He can be reached at