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Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

Contributor

Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

Apparently it's not a new problem as looking it up took me to information from Microsoft's own pages. I have my wifi locked down with a passphrase that's not something simple and I have even gone so far as to change my login and password for my router(SBG6580) tonight as an added precaution. I even set up a custom list on my router where I only listed the MAC address of my one device I have on that as it's supposed to block everything else.

 

Yet there was this Amazon device named "austin" on my home network again. So now I've tried using the block list to block the MAC address of this alleged device. Somebody I know said that ANYBODY with an active wifi signal may have their connection turned into an Xfinity Xfi wifi hotspot. Yet I kinda thought that it required having one of the Comcast rental gateways with dual band wifi to end up in that program. Whatever is allowing this unauthorized device on my network even after all of the changes I made tonight I want to find a way to lock it out, especially if it's slowing my connection down at all.

 

I included an image of the properties of the alleged device that I've seen pop up on my network.

Wifi leecher.jpg
Expert

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

Did you google amazon kfauwi?  Kindle Fire

Expert

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

@CheapestGamer,

You do need to have a Comcast rental gateway to be broadcasting a hotspot. Even if you had a hotspot, users would not be on your network. 

 

MAC filtering should solve your issue. Also, you seem to be on the right path with new and secure network credentials. 

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....


@RobertWy wrote:

Did you google amazon kfauwi?  Kindle Fire


That was one of the first things I did after seeing that I guess I'm not alone in having this issue from the Microsoft pages I looked at. Thing is nobody in this house has an Amazon device(unless one of my other devices has Amazon components in them somehow) but I know my neighbors right next door get near daily Amazon packages so I imagine they likely have at least one Kindle tablet in that household.

 

Yet there's no one by that name(austin) next door...that I know of anyway as I recently found out there's even MORE people than I thought living in the house when a woman who I never saw before that night came to the door when a delivery was made.

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

I logged on just now and there it was again. The same 'Amazon device' named austin on my network. I'm really thinking it must be a phantom device as was mentioned in that Microsoft article as I already blocked the MAC address and I just double checked it right now. It's still on the block list. Only option left if it is an actual device is to completely shut off my wifi, which would leave me with no access for my upstairs Playstation 4.

 

Here's the article in question that I mentioned above:

 

https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_10-security-winpc/amazon-device-randomly-s...

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

Just put my desktop PC into sleep mode for a minute and then brought it back out as an experiment. When I did I immediately went to the Network icon again and checked and lo and behold now I have what I believe is a cell phone supposedly leeching my wifi. People on the Microsoft article I linked above remarked about "cell phones" showing up on their networks as well. 

 

After looking the model up it would appear to be an RCA tablet showing up now. Yet the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet named 'austin' showed back up earlier just after I brought my PC out of sleep mode as well. Each time these devices seem to disappear within a minute of starting the PC back up.

 

Cell phone leeching my wifi.jpg
Problem Solver

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

I would change your home network password. Also; make sure you are on "Private Network", not "Public". Remove the device(s) from your network.

 

If someone in your house-hold had pushed the WPS button on your gateway to allow them to get a device added without the need to enter your network ID and the password, your network wouild have been open long enough for someone nearby to get on without using the password. Has any of the neighbors been in your home before?

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....


@MNtundraRET wrote:

I would change your home network password. Also; make sure you are on "Private Network", not "Public". Remove the device(s) from your network.

 

If someone in your house-hold had pushed the WPS button on your gateway to allow them to get a device added without the need to enter your network ID and the password, your network wouild have been open long enough for someone nearby to get on without using the password. Has any of the neighbors been in your home before?


I already changed everything(sign in and password for gateway, passphrase to for wifi, even SSID) the other night. It seems like these phantom devices are on my network when I first bring my PC out of sleep mode and MAYBE for a minute afterward. According to that article I linked it may be a glitch or bug with some update from Microsoft causing these issues, even though having named devices complete with MAC addresses seems weird.

 

Either way I'm the only person to use the network. Nobody else in my household even uses the internet besides me. Not only that but none of my current neighbors have ever been in my house. Heck. I don't even get along with the current neighbors on either side of me.

 

The solution a few people on that article I linked to posted seemed to be to power cycle everything on their network and then add the devices back one at a time. Maybe I should try powering down my desktop PC completely as well as shutting off my gateway for 30 seconds to a minute to see if that fixes this issue because I have a feeling that these 'devices' are really just phantoms.

Problem Solver

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

This idea may be "out in left field".

 

Is the router Comcast supplied?

 

I only use Comcast equipment for linear cable. I know most cable-boxes I replaced at nearest service center are "refurbished' units and not brand new. Is it possible that routers gotten from Comcast might also be refurbished? If so some devices (phantom ?) might have been left in the unit memory from a past user, and for some reason don't get deleted from memory.

Problem Solver

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

I'm not sure what exactly you want from this forum?

It's obviously not related to Comcast hardware, as you don't have a Comcast supplied gateway, and obviously it isn't a problem with Comcast's network as I've never seen a phantom device like this, and mind you I have a mix of Windows, Apple, and numerous IoT devices, and even an Amazon Echo in the house. 

 

I'm thinking it's related to the Windows Connect feature, but that has to be turned on, and you apparently reconfigured your network from scratch. 

 

I'm also thinking you might have some kind of remote management feature turned on in your router, such as enabling IFTTT or Alexa support, but then you already have MAC filtering turned on, so I doubt you have this feature turned on as well. 

 

I was also thinking your router's firmware may have been hacked, but you haven't told us exactly what hardware you have.


"Sometimes the best way to learn something is by doing it wrong and looking at what you did." - Neil Gaiman
Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....


@MNtundraRET wrote:

This idea may be "out in left field".

 

Is the router Comcast supplied?

 

I only use Comcast equipment for linear cable. I know most cable-boxes I replaced at nearest service center are "refurbished' units and not brand new. Is it possible that routers gotten from Comcast might also be refurbished? If so some devices (phantom ?) might have been left in the unit memory from a past user, and for some reason don't get deleted from memory.


No. It's my own device I bought (Arris SBG6580 gateway, which is combination modem/router) as I'd rather NOT pay Comcast ANOTHER $10 or more per month to rent one of their devices. It's bad enough they're gouging my family $120 a month for this current 'bundle' of mostly garbage channels. Only semi redeeming part is the internet. I guess I'll have to reset it to factory specs, as that's what supposedly fixed the 'phantom devices' for some users responding to that MS article I posted.

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....


@darkangelic wrote:

I'm not sure what exactly you want from this forum?

It's obviously not related to Comcast hardware, as you don't have a Comcast supplied gateway, and obviously it isn't a problem with Comcast's network as I've never seen a phantom device like this, and mind you I have a mix of Windows, Apple, and numerous IoT devices, and even an Amazon Echo in the house. 

 

I'm thinking it's related to the Windows Connect feature, but that has to be turned on, and you apparently reconfigured your network from scratch. 

 

I'm also thinking you might have some kind of remote management feature turned on in your router, such as enabling IFTTT or Alexa support, but then you already have MAC filtering turned on, so I doubt you have this feature turned on as well. 

 

I was also thinking your router's firmware may have been hacked, but you haven't told us exactly what hardware you have.


To start I could do without the snark in your first sentence of your reply. As for Comcast's connection, the current firmware that they pushed onto this gateway was buggy when it first released several years ago. It caused FREQUENT disconnects that would last for MULTIPLE hours. Sadly since Comcast controls what firmware is released and none of us with these devices could simply reset them to use an older firmware until Arris and/or Comcast figured out the issue. So I had to put up with MONTHS worth of disconnects in the overnight hours which is when I typically use my internet connection the most.

 

Either way I've added both MAC addresses of the two devices I've seen pop up on my network to the block filter on my gateway and it's STILL showing them(or at least the austin one). I guess I will just try resetting the gateway back to factory specs, redoing the sign in and password AGAIN and then coming up with yet another unique passphrase in the hopes of stopping these phantom devices from showing up. For now though I've shut off my wifi just in case these devices are actually using it. I could always set up a really, really old Linksys router I have with only G band for wifi and place that closer to my device I need the wifi for in the hopes that it's out of the range of the possible leechers. Either that or just switch my gateway to just G versus G and N.

Contributor

Re: Keep seeing a device named 'austin' on my home network....

I ended up going with the easiest solution for me at this juncture. That being moving my device I was using on the wifi downstairs and hooking it up wired to my gateway after completely shutting off the wifi. 

 

I already went through bridging and port forwarding and all sorts of other junk like this when I was on DSL. Didn't want to spend HOURS redoing everything only to see these other devices continue to show up.