How secure is your wireless network? It is very difficult to handle a hacker attack when your Wifi network is completely devoid of encryption or password, allowing anyone to use your Wifi. Wireless security is important for everyone because no one wants hackers to break into our network and steal bandwidth or enter our connected home.
Let's take a look at some steps you can take to secure your Wifi network:
Enable WPA2 encryption on the wireless modem
If you set up your Wi-Fi network several years ago and haven't changed any settings since then, chances are you're using outdated Wireless Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption that's easily hackable even by novice hackers. Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) is the current standard and is much more resistant to hackers.
Depending on the age of the wireless modem, the firmware may need to be updated to add WPA2 support. If you are unable to update your modem firmware to add support for WPA2, you should consider buying a new wireless modem that supports WPA2 encryption.
Do not use a common wireless network name (SSID)
There is a list hackers like to refer to that contains the top 1000 most common SSIDs (wireless network names). If your SSID is on this list, it is likely that the hackers have already created a custom Rainbow Table (password hash table) that can be used to crack your network password (unless you are actually using a network password. long).
Some implementations of WPA2 may also be vulnerable to this type of attack. Verify that your network name is not listed. Make your network name as casual as possible and avoid using dictionary words.
- How to change the default name (SSID) of a wireless modem?
Create a really long wireless network password (pre-shared key)
In conjunction with creating a secure network name that is not in the list of most common SSIDs, you need to choose a secure password for the pre-shared key. A shorter password is more likely to be cracked than a longer one.
Longer passwords are better because the Rainbow tables used to crack passwords are impractical after exceeding a certain password length due to storage limitations.
Consider setting your wireless network password to be 16 or more characters in length. You have plenty of room to get creative with your pre-shared key as the maximum password length for WPA2-PSK is 64 characters.
It may seem like a real hassle to type in a super long password, but since most Wi-Fi devices cache this password, you'll only have to endure this annoyance once per device, which is a small price to pay for the additional security it provides.
- How to change the Wi-Fi password
Enable and test the wireless modem firewall
Most wireless modems have a built-in firewall that can be used to protect you from hackers. It is recommended that you enable and configure the built-in firewall (see the modem manufacturer's support site for details).
You can also enable the “Stealth Mode” feature of the firewall to reduce the visibility of the network as a potential target. After enabling the firewall, you should periodically check it to make sure it is working properly.
- How to hide Wifi from your neighbors
Disable the “Administrator via wireless” function on the wireless modem
You can prevent hackers from taking control of your wireless modem's administrative capabilities by disabling the “admin via wireless” configuration setting.
Disabling “Admin via Wireless” ensures that only someone connected to the modem via an Ethernet cable can access the administrative functions of the wireless modem. This helps prevent them from trying to disable other security features like wireless encryption and firewall.
- Wi-Fi tutorial: how to connect to a Wifi network
- How to enable the firewall built into your wireless modem router
- What is a firewall and how does a firewall work?
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