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How to Secure Wifi Network (or) Wireless Internet Connection

Are you searching Google for How to secure Wifi Network? Then you are at the right place. Wireless Networking (Wi-Fi) has made it so easy for anyone to use the Internet on your computer, mobile phones, tablets and other wireless devices anywhere in the Office, House, Hotels, and Restaurants. Without the router, there’s no wi-fi for your laptops, your phones, and all the other web-connected devices. But there’s a lot more to Wi-Fi security than just setting a simple password. Here we are providing the instructions that need to be taken for best wifi security.

Free wifi hotspots are available everywhere around the world. Wi-Fi is one of the easy entry-point for hackers to get into your network without stepping inside your building because wireless is much more open to unauthorized people than wired networks.

Wireless router security is one of the most important things that you have to look into when you have a WiFi connection at your Home or Office. Wi-Fi security has evolved to the extent that most modern routers are set up to be secure with strong passwords, encryption methods, built-in firewalls and other security measures devised to protect you from hackers.

Spending a little bit time in learning about and applying enhanced security measures can protect your network in a better way.

What’s Wi-Fi networking?

Wi-Fi hotspot uses radio waves to deliver network connectivity. Wireless adapters establish wireless networks, which are called hotspots. Hotspots allow users to connect to the internet. Wi-Fi provides wireless connectivity by emitting radio frequencies between 2.4GHz and 5GHz. This frequency depends on the network capacity.

How to Secure Wifi Network (or) Wireless Internet Connection

How to Secure Your Home Wireless Network

It is extremely difficult for someone to steal your bandwidth if you use wired networks, but the big problem with WiFi is that others can access the Internet using your broadband connection.

This practice, also known as piggybacking, is bad for three reasons:

  • It will increase your monthly Internet bill especially when you have to pay per byte of data transfer.
  • It will decrease your Internet access speed since you are now sharing the same internet connection with other users.
  • It can create a security hazard* as others may hack your computers and access your personal files through your own wireless network.

There are so many incidents that the innocent Internet users have been arrested for sending hate emails but in reality, their email accounts were hacked through the unsecured Wi-Fi networks that they had at home.

Don’t worry friends! It is very easy to make your wireless network secure, which will both prevent others from stealing your internet and will also prevent hackers from taking control of your computers through your own wireless network.

Here a few simple steps that you need to follow to secure your wireless network:

Open Your Router Settings Page

In order to access your router’s page, you must know your router’s IP address:

  • Windows – Open Start, click the Settings gear, click Network & Internet, click View your network properties, and view the address next to “Default gateway”.
  • Mac – Open the Apple menu, click System Preferences, click Network, click Advanced, click the TCP/IP tab, and look for the number to the right of “Router:”.
  • Common router addresses include 192.168.0.1, 192.168.1.1, and 192.168.2.1, as well as 10.0.0.1 for Apple routers.
  • On some routers, the IP address is found on the sticker on the side of the router

Open your preferred browser and enter your router’s IP address into the browser’s address bar.

After entering the correct address, you may be asked for the username and password; if so, log in with your router credentials. These are typically different credentials than you use to connect to the Wi-Fi.

  • The default username is usually admin, and the default password is usually admin, password, or blank. Most people change these after configuring the router, however, so if you can’t remember the username and password you may need to reset the router.
  • If you didn’t change the default username and password, it should be printed in the router’s documentation or on the router itself.

Create A Unique Password on Your Router

After logging into your router’s page, in order to secure your network, change the default password of the router to something more secure.

This will prevent others from accessing the router and you can easily maintain the security settings that you want. You can change the password from the Administration settings on your router’s settings page. The default values are generally admin/password.

Log out as Administrator

Once you’ve set up your router, log out as administrator, to lessen the risk that someone can piggyback on your session to gain control of your device.

Change your Network’s SSID name

The SSID (or Wireless Network Name) of your Wireless Router is usually named as the brand name of the router (e.g., Linksys). Although this will not make your network inherently more secure. If you change the SSID name of your network then it will be more difficult for others to know which network they are connecting to.

This setting is usually under the basic wireless settings in your router’s settings page. Once this is set, you will always be sure that you are connecting to the correct Wireless network even if there are multiple wireless networks around you. Don’t use your name, home address or other personal information in the SSID name.

Enable Network Encryption

In order to prevent other devices nearby you from using your internet connection, you need to encrypt your wireless signals. There are several encryption methods for wireless settings, including WEP, WPA (WPA-Personal), and WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access version 2).

To enable encryption on your Wireless network, open the wireless security settings on your router’s configuration page. This will usually let you select which security method you wish to choose; if you have older devices, choose WEP, otherwise, go with WPA2. Enter a passphrase to access the network; make sure to set this to something that would be difficult for others to guess.

Choose a WiFi password which is a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters.

Filter MAC addresses

Whether you have a laptop or a Wi-Fi enabled mobile phone, all your wireless devices have a unique MAC address. For more security purpose, you can add the MAC addresses of all your devices to your wireless router’s settings so that only the specified devices can connect to your Wi-Fi network.

MAC addresses are hard-coded into your networking equipment, so one address will only let that one device on the network. It is impossible to spoof a MAC address, but an attacker must first know one of the MAC addresses of the computers that are connected to your Wireless network before he can attempt spoofing.

  • To enable MAC address filtering, first make a list of all your hardware devices that you want to connect to your wireless network.
  • Find their MAC addresses, and then add them to the MAC address filtering in your router’s administrative settings.
  • You can find the MAC address for your computers by opening Command Prompt and typing in “ipconfig /all”, which will show your MAC address beside the name “Physical Address”.
  • You can find the MAC addresses of Wireless mobile phones and other portable devices under their network settings, though this will vary for each device.

Enable the Router Firewall

A firewall examines incoming network data and blocks anything that looks unsafe. Most routers have some kind of built-in firewall feature most likely SPI Firewall, which compares parts of all incoming network data against a database and only allows it in if it passes the test.

It’s probably enabled by default, but check and make sure it’s on. Note that this may interfere with certain online games. If it does, you can get around it by using port forwarding.

Also, note that a router firewall isn’t enough on its own. Sometimes malicious data can get through undetected, which is why you should also install a free software firewall on your device as a second layer of defense.

Reduce the Range of the Wireless Signal

If your wireless router has a high range but you are staying in a small house or apartment, you can decrease the signal range by either changing the mode of your router to 802.11g (instead of 802.11n or 802.11b) or use a different wireless channel.

You can also try placing the router under the bed, inside a shoe box or wrap a foil around the router antennas so that you can somewhat restrict the direction of signals.

Turn off any “Remote Management” features:

Some routers offer an option to allow remote access to your router’s controls, such as to enable the manufacturer to provide technical support. Never leave this feature enabled. Hackers can use them to get into your home network.

Upgrade Router’s Firmware

You should check the manufacturer’s site occasionally to make sure that your router is running the latest firmware. You can find the existing firmware version of your router using the router’s dashboard at 192.168.0.1

MAC Address filtering with WPA2 (AES) encryption is probably the best way to secure your wireless network.

If you enable the various security settings in your wireless router, you need to add the new settings to your computers and other wireless devices so that they all can connect to the Wi-Fi network.

Tips for Public Wi-Fi Hotspot Security

Most of the people are addicted to free Wi-Fi and don’t think twice about connecting to any network that can get them online in most cases.

Pick the Correct Network

When you try to connect to public Wi-Fi, you can see multiple network names that are similar but not the same.

Hackers use Wi-Fi Phishing method which will get you logging into the wrong network to get your information. Most people don’t take the time to check and jump on the strongest, open signal they see. But you should always check that you pick the correct network.

Pick a Secure Network

While trying to connect to a wifi network, if you see the lock icon, it means you can’t get access. Networks with zero security don’t have a lock symbol next to them, or the word “secured,” which shows on a Windows laptop.

On an iPhone, if you click an unsecured network even if it’s your own home wifi network, you’ll get a warning that reads “Security Recommendation.”

Don’t ever try to connect to WiFi network which doesn’t have a lock icon and a password to grant access.

Avoid Personal Transactions with Public Hotspots

It is better to avoid doing more serious tasks like bill paying, accessing your bank account, or using your credit card when connected to public Wi-Fi.

You can do those transactions when you’re connected safely to your home network.

Ask to Connect

You can set most devices to ask before they connect to a network, rather than just automatically connecting to either the strongest open network around or a network they’ve connected to before. Never assume the network you used in one place is as safe as one with the same name in another place.

Anyone with the right tools could spoof a Wi-Fi network’s broadcast name (called the SSID). If the device asks first, you’ve got a chance to make a decision about whether it’s safe to connect or not.

On iOS, for example, go to Settings > Wi-Fi, and check off “Ask to Join Networks.” On Android, it’s Settings > Wi-Fi > > Advanced > Wi-Fi notifications (turn it off).

Avoid Using Your Passwords

It is better to use a password manager like LastPass or Dashlane. They store passwords for you and keep them encrypted, even via their apps. If you do use passwords, try to make sure they’re on sites where you have two-factor authentication set up.

Disable Sharing

Most of the times we connect our PC or Smartphones to a public WiFi hotspot to share files and print documents. If you leave that sharing open at a hotspot and connect to the wrong thing, you’re giving an easy access to your device to hackers. Disable it before you go out.

In Windows 10, go to Settings > Network and Internet > Wi-Fi > Change Advanced Sharing Options (on the right) and look for Guest or Public—click the down caret to open that section. Click the radio buttons next to “Turn off network discovery” so your PC isn’t seen, and “Turn off file and printer sharing” to avoid sharing.

Use HTTPS and SSL

Many websites use the HTTPS protocol to support SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) to make your connection to them more secure. A lot of websites only use HTTPS links now. It’s simply a more secure option. Most online retailers and financial institutions use SSL on their websites.

You can typically tell if the site you’re on uses HTTPS even if you can’t see it listed in the URL (that would be the first part, as seen in “https://www.Daytricks.com“). For example, a lock icon and the word “Secure” appear at the start of the address bar in the Google Chrome browser on the desktop (just the appears on most smartphone browsers). Get the HTTPS Everywhere extension for Chrome (even on Android), Firefox, or Opera, it’ll force every site connection you make to the secure connection, if available.

Take Your Hotspot With You

Public access Wi-Fi is great, but you could just carry your hotspot with you. Cellular modem hotspots have their own battery. Its price is a little bit high, but it might be worthable if you are a regular traveler.

Keep Your OS and Apps Updated

Operating system (OS) updates are annoying but they are necessary. OS updates are serious business; they often fix serious security holes. Don’t forget to update your other mobile apps. App updates may also fix serious security holes. Especially the browser apps.

  • On iOS, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store, and make sure “Updates” is turned on so apps update themselves.
  • On Android devices you can do the same with Google Play > > Settings > Auto-update apps. You can set them to update over Wi-Fi only, or cellular connections.

You may still have to occasionally go in and click on “Update All” button to install the downloaded updates.

Who is Connected to your Wireless Network

  • Open your router’s administration page (using the 192.168.* * address) and look for the DHCP Clients Table (it’s under Status > Local Network).
  • Here you will see a list of all computers and wireless devices that are connected to your home network.

Is My Connection Secure?

Your WiFi connection will be more secure if you repeatedly change your router password for every four weeks.

Now you need to search on Google for How do I secure my wifi? Just follow the above steps to secure wifi router

Also See:

Hope now you know WiFi Protection methods. If you like the article ” How to Secure Wifi Network? – Tips for Public Wi-Fi Security”, you can share with your friends via Facebook & Google+ and feel free to ask your doubts.

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