This article covers troubleshooting connection problems with Mobile Protection in the Winston Mobile App. If you already know you need to forward ports, please skip to Step 7 below. 

1. Uninstall Mobile Protection

While on your Winston wifi network, go to Mobile Protection in the app and uninstall mobile protection.

2. Reinstall Mobile Protection 

While on your Winston wifi network, go to Mobile Protection in the app and re-install mobile protection and go through the steps. 

IMPORTANT: You may receive a warning or error message that says you need to open ports 500 and 4500 - we will get to that later in step 7 if you're connection issues persist. Sometimes your phone's wifi settings may be impacting the connection test and giving a false error message. 

3. Ensure Mobile Protection Toggle is Off

Go back to your Device Menu screen in the app and make sure the master Mobile Protection toggle is off.

4. Turn off Phone's Wifi

Turn off your phone's wifi so you are only connected to cellular internet. This is important - some phones' wifi settings can interfere with the connection test!

5. Turn Mobile Protection Toggle On

Go back to the Device Menu screen in the Winston app and toggle the master Mobile Protection toggle on. 

6. Check Phone's VPN Settings

Check your phone settings to see if the VPN is connected. You may see a "VPN" icon appear at the top of your screen. 

(Settings -> General -> VPN)
(You should receive a phone notification, you typically swipe down on the screen to see notifications)

If that still doesn't work... 

 7. Port Forwarding

 If you are unable to connect to the Mobile Protection VPN still, you will likely need to apply port forwarding rules within your combination modem/router or router to Winston. You may have received an error or warning when setting up Mobile Protection about port forwarding. 

Here are some common network configuration examples where port forwarding is likely required:

Internet -> Combination Modem/Router -> Winston 

Internet -> Combination Modem/Router -> Winston -> Router

Internet -> Standalone Modem -> Router -> Winston

(Items in bold are where port forwarding is likely required) 

So what is a port and what is port forwarding? 

There are several different types of internet traffic, and in short, a port is used to differentiate between these types of traffic. For example, port 80 and 443 are used for HTTP and HTTPS traffic - you are likely familiar with these terms any time you visit a website, e.g. your Winston dashboard's full URL is "" ("https" indicates the website is operating on port 443). 

There are thousands upon thousands of ports out there, and typically combination modem/routers and some routers block traffic on most ports by default for security reasons. We need to tell them to allow a couple ports for Winston. 

The Mobile Protection VPN operates on ports 500 and 4500.

How do I set up the port forwarding rules?

Note: Every combination modem/router is different. Below are general steps to follow with an example, but if you are unsure, look up your combination modem/router or router model online, or visit

First, you will want to log in to your router or combination modem/router. Combination modem/routers typically have login information on an attached sticker. Routers may have an app or sticker as well.

Second, you will want to navigate to the port forwarding rules (commonly under advanced settings). 

Third, you will want to add the following port forwarding rules: 

WAN PortLAN PortLAN IPProtocolName
500500WAN Address of Winston*UDPWinston Mobile
45004500WAN Address of Winston*UDPWinston Mobile

Optional but recommended port forwarding rules while you're at it - adding these rules will improve the performance of the Privacy Mesh Network: 

WAN PortLAN PortLAN IPProtocolName
77767776WAN Address of Winston*TCP & UDPWinston Mesh
77777777WAN Address of Winston*TCP & UDPWinston Mesh
77787778WAN Address of Winston*TCP & UDPWinston Mesh

You can find the WAN Address of your Winston by navigating to your advanced settings here.


Below is an example of how to set up port forwarding rules on Verizon FiOS for reference:

You will first log into your Verizon combination device. If you are unsure of the address to log in, this is often posted on a sticker on the device similar to the following image:
Note* This will often provide the username and password of the combination device as well.

Once you have logged into your combination device you will have to proceed into your Firewall tab then into Port Forwarding.

Once you had navigated to the Port Forwarding section of your combination device, you will need to create two separate port forwarding rules for Winston's mobile application.

WAN PortLAN PortLAN IPProtocolName
500500Wan Address of Winston*UDPWinston Mobile
45004500Wan Address of Winston*UDPWinston Mobile

Note* You will be able to find the WAN Address of your Winston through the following link