Setting up a port forward in your router sounds scary at first and a lot of people want to know if it's safe or not. It's a difficult question to answer, but in short:
- If you are forwarding a port to a game console like Xbox or Playstation then it's absolutely 100% safe.
- If you are forwarding a port to a consumer device like a camera or a DVR then the only risk is people accessing that device, but the risk is very low as long as you've set up a password on the device.
- If you are forwarding a port to a computer you need to make sure that the computer has a software firewall. Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 all come with an excellent firewall and the default settings are good.
We'll cover each of these in more detail.
Is it Safe to Port Forward to a Gaming Console?
Gaming consoles are designed from the ground up to be connected directly to the Internet. There are virtually zero security exploits discovered in them, and when they are discovered they are closed almost immediately by system updates. There is no way to break into a gaming console and access your home network. Forwarding a port to a gaming console is totally risk-free.
YES! It's totally safe to forward a port to a gaming console.
Is it Safe to Port Forward to a DVR or Security Camera?
You should not be worried about forwarding a port to a security camera, DVR, or other consumer devices. Like gaming consoles, these devices are designed to be connected directly to the Internet. It is not possible to use a DVR or security camera to access your home network. When you connect your DVR or security camera to the Internet through a port forward the only thing that you are putting at risk is the stuff provided by that device. Worst case scenario is that people will be able to see your video feed. As long as you set up a password in the device then you are secure even with a port forward.
YES! It's totally safe to forward a port to a DVR or security camera.
Is it Safe to Port Forward to a Computer?
This is where it starts to get a little risky and where all the rumors of danger come from. While it's true that it used to be dangerous to forward a port to a computer, almost all modern operating systems come with a very competent firewall out of the box. As long as you have Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10 installed then you have a solid firewall in place and can safely forward a port to that computer.
With OS X you may have to enable the firewall. While OS X ships with a great firewall it is usually disabled by default. Once you enable the firewall in OS X you should be good to go.
Usually. If you have a modern operating system and your firewall is turned on.
Is Software for Forwarding a Port Safe?
We sell software on this site that is designed to setup a port forward in your computer. Our software is called PFConfig and it's a part of the Port Forward Network Utilities software package. As long as you download the software from this site then it is safe. Do not download our software from torrent sites or sites that offer "free downloads". These sites usually wrap other people's software in ads, malware, and other unwanted stuff.
You can safely download our software from here.
When in doubt you can always use the excellent online virus scanner called VirusTotal to scan software before you install it. We encourage you to scan all software before installing it, ours included.
YES! As long as you download it from us.
Is Portforward.com Legit?
Yes, we're in this business for the long run. If you have any doubt just look around the various forums out there that reference us. We have literally 1,000's of great link-ins. You don't get 1,000's of great links without having a good business ethic.
A lot of people are worried about using our software because they are afraid we are some kind of scam. That couldn't be further from the truth. We have gone to great lengths to make sure our software is virus, worm, and malware free. We have been in business for quite some time and want to remain in the port forwarding business long term. We also realize that the internet can be dangerous and there are a lot of scams out there. We are not one of them.
YES! We are in this business for the long run.
If you have paid for our software and are having trouble then you can get technical support from our Support Team. We have a very high success rate at getting ports forwarded for people.