Securing your wireless network

Wireless security is an important aspect of most people’s lives today.  There are multiple methods used to ensure that the data traversing wireless networks stay safe.  Likewise, there are many ways that a wireless network can be misconfigured.  This post will provide some basic tips and tricks to secure your home wireless network without needing a degree in computer networking.

The single most important thing to do on your wireless router is to change the admin password.  Depending on the manufacturer, most admin passwords are either blank or “admin”, and sometimes the manufacturer name will be used.  We apply this principle in other areas of our lives but can forget about something as important as that.  For instance, when you buy a house from someone else, you rekey the locks to make sure that your keys are unique and no one else would be able to have easy access to the house.

Another easy fix is to make sure that the wireless network name is changed.  You don’t want to use your last name or something that would identify you, rather choose a name that would not be identifiable of either your router manufacturer or your family name.

Along with changing the network name, setting a strong password for authentication is equally important.  A good standard to use for setting the network password is to have a combination of upper and lower case, numbers, and special characters, and have a password length of at least 12 characters.  Using the home example; you would not leave your home’s doors open for anyone to come in without ensuring proper identification.  The same is true of wireless networks.  Protecting them with a password helps ensure only devices with the correct identification are connected to the network.

In closing, it is important to think of cybersecurity as you would the physical security of your home.  You wouldn’t leave the doors and windows open when you leave town.  Lacking good personal cybersecurity practices is like leaving the doors and windows open to your personal and financial information.  Taking steps like those presented in the previous paragraphs helps provide the “deadbolt” to your personal network and information.

 

 

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