Your Guide to Securing Your Home WiFi
These days, almost all of us have high-speed internet at home and many of us have wireless routers. Wireless routers are convenient because they allow you to access the internet from anywhere in your home. However, they also create a potential security risk. Unlike wired networks, wireless networks transmit information through the air. This means that a hacker can easily intercept data if your network is not properly secured.
How to Secure your WiFi:
1) Change the default password on your router.
2) Use WPA2 encryption with a strong password (at least 12 characters long).
3) Cable lock your router and computer to an immovable object in your house.
What do you mean, secure your home WiFi?
To be clear, this is not about securing your home WiFi from hackers (though we’ll discuss that in a later article), this is about securing your home WiFi to make sure that no one walks by and steals your computers.
In other words, it’s about physical security. Thieves can easily access your computer without a password, and once they have the laptop or tablet that contains all of those passwords and personal information, you’re in big trouble. You need to put up a defense against these threats.
So what should you do?
Use cable locks to lock down computers and routers.
You don’t want your home WiFi network to be hacked. Here are some steps you can take to make yourself less likely to be hacked.
1. Change your router’s default admin password and Wi-Fi network name (SSID).
2. Change the Wi-Fi security type from WEP to WPA2, or in some cases, WPA3. Enable WPA3 if it is available.
3. Get a VPN.
4. Use dual-factor authentication when possible.
5. Use cable locks on computers and routers that are not in use, or keep them in a locked cabinet or room when they are not being used.
Every day, millions of computer users and more than a million small businesses are hacked. A majority of those attacks on homes and small businesses begin by stealing a WiFi password and then using it to access the network.
WiFi hacking is shockingly easy and most people don’t even realize how vulnerable they are. There are two major ways hackers use to break into wifi networks: brute force attack or guessing the password and WPS (Wi Fi Protected Setup) PIN attack. Brute force is the easiest way to gain access to a site – it tries usernames and passwords, over and over again, until it gets in. This can take days or even months, depending on the strength of your password. WPS PIN attack is even simpler – you only need an 8-digit pin to get into your network. And, as it turns out, that number is pretty easy to guess!
The best way to protect yourself online is of course a strong password but another step you can take is securing your router physically with a cable lock! Just like you would lock up your bike, you can now lock up your router with a simple cable lock!
Here’s how to do it:
1) Locate the Kensington Security Slot on your router or modem/
Cable locks are a great way to keep your computer and router secure.
– Figure out what cable lock you need by looking at the slots on the bottom of your laptop and router.
– For a laptop, you’ll want to get the Kensington MicroSaver 2.0 Security Cable Lock.
– For your router, you’ll want to get the Kensington ClickSafe Keyed Twin Laptop Lock.
– These can both be found on Amazon.
I’ve been working on a security product for the past 6 months, and as part of our research we went out to campus grounds to test whether wireless routers and laptops were secure. The results were pretty surprising. Almost none of the students secure their routers, and even fewer bother to secure their laptops.
So, we came up with an idea to make it easy for everyone to use a cable lock on their laptop, and people seemed to like it.
We don’t plan to sell this online or anything; we just want to get the word out so that people can secure their stuff more easily. We’re hoping you guys can help!
One of the most important steps you can take to protect your home network is to secure your wireless router. We provide a simple guide for how to do this for various models.
A secure network means it’s only accessible by people with permission. This prevents unwanted users from accessing your home network, and keeps them from using it as a jumping off point to access the Internet or your files. A secure wireless network is particularly important given the increasing number of unsecured devices that use WiFi, including “Internet of Things” (IoT) devices: web-enabled cameras, thermostats, printers, routers, mobile phones, smart TVs and other electronic devices that are often vulnerable to attack. In addition to protecting your home network, securing your wireless connection also helps prevent unwanted access to neighboring networks – a threat known as “piggybacking.”
Important: If you have not yet secured your network, you should complete this process before changing any other settings on your router. The steps on this page will likely vary by manufacturer and even model. Be sure to review the manufacturer’s support site for additional information and updates.