Having a reliable Wi-Fi network is something that both companies and homes strive to achieve. However, having a home Wi-Fi means that you have to know how to protect your home wireless network from hackers. This is because Wi-Fi signals usually go far beyond the walls of the homes and buildings into the streets.
It is unrealistic to restrict mobile devices access to Wi-Fi for both homes and companies. This is because companies encourage employees to use their mobile devices to access the Wi-Fi. Similarly, households cannot turn off the Wi-Fi access since they continuously have visitors who use the Wi-Fi when they visit.
Thus, many companies and individuals go to great lengths to ensure the hackers have no chance. Below are ways of how you can protect your home wireless network from hackers.
What Is A Wi-Fi Router?
In simple terms, a Wi-Fi router is a wireless router electronic device that sends information received from a wireless Internet network to other wireless devices. It also acts like a wireless hotspot from which other Wi-Fi enabled devices, such as mobile phones, laptops, and small tablets, receive data.
With the advent of Wi-Fi enabled devices, such as laptops and phones, users are able to communicate over a public network without the need to connect to a local Internet service provider. By connecting to the Internet through the same device, users are able to share documents, files, images, videos, and other types of data among various devices.
A Wi-Fi router comes in two basic models. One is the WEP router, which uses WEP encryption, while the other is the WPA router. With the former, an outside hacker won’t be able to read the sensitive data on the network, making it difficult to trace the device’s owner.
Turn on Encryption
One of the ways you can protect your data is by scrambling the data of a message, thus making it hard for hackers to decipher it. This is what encryption is all about. There are various types of encryption, but the best encryption for your home wireless network is WPA2. However, this encryption does not work well with devices that are more than ten years old. For it to work with the devices, you have to upgrade those devices.
You can quickly check if your Wi-Fi router has WPA2 encryption by going to the network settings and then checking the wireless properties.
Update Your Wi-Fi Router
Just like any other software, your router firmware can have vulnerabilities that make it easier for hackers to exploit it. Thus, updating your Wi-Fi router software frequently is one tip on how to protect your home wireless network from hackers. Some routers have the automatic function whereby the software updates itself automatically with time. However, some lack this feature, so you have to update the software manually via 192.168.1.1 login to protect your Wi-Fi.
Hide your SSID
One of the things you are required to do when setting your wireless home network is to create a Service Set Identifier, otherwise known as SSID. SSIDs make it easier for wireless network users to find and connect to their respective networks. However, the same feature can be used by hackers to exploit your network.
Manufacturers allocate a default name to devices; hence the device will have the default name from the manufacturer before you change it. Most of the time, you may be sharing the same default network name with your neighbor if both of you are using the same device. If both networks are yet to be encrypted, it can be a security nightmare.
You can hide your SSID when you customize your SSID. By hiding your SSID, you make it difficult for hackers to identify your router. Without knowing the router, hackers can hardly access your network.
Provide a Guest Network
Even though allowing your visitor to use your network makes you more vulnerable to hackers, you cannot deny them. Fortunately, you can set a guest network for them. The guest network will give your guests’ access to your Wi-Fi, but they will not be able to access your family’s or companies internal network.
You can do this by using a separate internet connection for your guests. The different guest network will have its Wi-Fi access point 192.168.1.1. However, if you are using a business-grade or the latest version of wireless routers since they are built to enable the running of two different Wi-Fi networks concurrently. In this case, the two networks will be your Wi-Fi and another one for your guests.
Nevertheless, do not forget to turn on the WPA encryption on your guest network. By doing so, your guests will have to input the password before they can access the network. This gives you control over the people using the network as well as prevent the number of people who can access the network from becoming too large through changing the password frequently.
Furthermore, having a guest network for your guests prevents your Wi-Fi from getting infected from malware and viruses from the guests’ devices.
Fighting hackers is not easy. However, you can keep the hackers at bay by customizing your SSID, updating your router software, hiding your SSID, turning on encryption, and having a guest network for your guests. Hopefully, the above tips on how to protect your home wireless network from hackers are going to keep your wireless network safe.
It’s never okay to completely trust your wireless network because malware and cyberattacks can jeopardize your files. For your reference, take a look at the following cybersecurity tips:
- Never share any of your online credentials to anybody else, most especially your password, one-time pin, or codes sent on your phone to verify your account.
- Ensure that you have a reliable data backup of your files.
- Make sure to only access secure websites with https encryption.
- Invest in high-quality security software for your laptop or computer.
- Always take note of the security settings of your computer device and ensure that your system is up-to-date.