So I recently bought MI Air purifier. It uses my wifi to get connected to internet. It needs to connect to internet so that I can monitor/control it from anywhere.

Now, what kind of precautions do I need to take with it? Can someone hack it and listen to my wifi traffic? Since it stores my wifi password, can the hacker gain entire access to my internet? I use TP-LINK 300M Wireless N Router Model No. TL-WR841N/TL-WR841ND.


Follow the instructions in your router's Users Guide to create a Guest wireless network (Section 4.7 of the user's guide.) This makes your router advertise a second wireless access point. Pick a different name for it, such as dharm0us_guest. Uncheck the box marked "Allow Guests to Access My Local Network". Pick a password for the guest network that is different from your home network's password. This essentially creates a DMZ, which is a network isolated from the rest of your home's computers and devices.

Then, reconfigure your Air Purifier to use the newly created Guest network, dharm0us_guest, with the new password. Now if your Air Purifier is hacked, it won't expose your internal computers to any threats.

Note that if you do this, you won't be able to "locally" control the air purifier with your smartphone app. Your only access will be via remotely, via their service interface. This may or may not be an issue for you, it's simply a consequence of isolating their device to reduce the risks to your network.

While you're at it, you might also want to follow the user's guide in section 4.9.4 to disable UPnP in your router. This will prevent these kinds of devices inside your network from opening security holes in your router without your knowledge.

  • I went through the Manual. But "Guest network" tab is missing when I login to the router dashboard.
    – simplfuzz
    Oct 16 '16 at 17:22
  • My hardware version for this router is 10. They have Guest network support from version 11 onwards.
    – simplfuzz
    Oct 16 '16 at 17:42
  • You may have to add another access point/router to achieve your desired level of isolation. Can you at least disable UPnP on your router so their untrusted device can't open any holes in your current router's firewall? Oct 17 '16 at 6:08

Nice guide, But You should note that there is no way to control Mi Air Purifier locally, because even if you are in the same network as your devices, MI app routes data through internet to MI servers and relays commands and data back to you. In other words in case you do not have internet connection, it is IMPOSSIBLE to communicate with your device and you will loose control over it altogether. As a result you wont loose anything by making an isolated guest network.

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