A home wireless network is a process of connecting you’re an internet source such as the cable from your internet service provider to a wireless router. This will allow you to connect many devices wirelessly to the network connection quickly, so How To Secure Home Wireless Network?
Usually, once we connect all our devices to the network through the wireless router, we just put it into a particular place in the house and leave it there. We think that as long as it’s working, that’s all that matters, but that is wrong.
The internet router plays a vital role in improving your internet line performance. It acts as the bridge between your devices and the internet network. It is also exposed to cybercriminals who can use it to access our devices’ systems and data.
Being aware of the dangers coming from data breaches and ransomware attacks will prevent you from getting into trouble. Therefore, it is crucial that you take into consideration all the security measures by increasing your Wi-Fi security in order to keep yourself protected.
However, the reality is different. What most people believe by security is to set up a password to prevent neighbors from using their network connection.
Yes, this is important, but there are other serious threats that you should protect yourself from. In case you have weak Wi-Fi security, online criminals can have access to your traffic and get information that they can use in online crimes. These include Man-in-the-Middle attacks, network sniffing, and data theft.
Wi-Fi network is not very secure, so you have to be careful with that. It has serious security issues such as the Krack Wi-Fi Vulnerability in the Wireless Protected Access II (WPA2) protocol, which can affect all devices connected to your wireless network.
How To Secure Home Wireless Network
Learning how to secure your wireless home network against these threats becomes a necessity, especially if you have many devices connected to your Wi-Fi and sensitive data that you want and should protect.
In this article, we will help you with securing your wireless home network against these threats. We will show you how to proceed with this process step by step.
Step 1: Modify your default Home Network Name
Every Wi-Fi network has a default name, which is known as SID (Service Set Identifier). To increase your security, the first thing you should do is to modify the default name.
Try using a discreet name that won’t give any clue about your identity. Avoid using “Mary’s Wi-Fi” and names like that. You should also not reveal what type of router you have. It makes it easier for hackers to hack your home network security if they know what kind of router you are using.
Overall, just avoid giving information about your router’s identity and your identity as well. You have to be aware of the risks coming with identity theft operations.
You can use this guide to show you how to quickly change your wireless network name.
Step 2: Customize a Strong Password for your Wireless Network
At first, every router comes with a default name and also a default password. Just as you modified your Wi-Fi name in the previous step, you will have to change even your default password. The default password is easy to be hacked especially if hackers know the brand of your router. It is crucial that you edit these credentials at first.
A strong password should be of at least 20 characters, including different numbers, letters, and even symbols.
Here is a guide that will assist you in setting a password for your home network. Of course, your visitors at home might find this weird and might discourage them from using your wireless network, but at least you’ll have some quality time away from boring posts on Facebook and Instagram.
Step 3: Activate your Network Encryption
Each wireless network has a different encryption language given to it, such as WEP, WPA, or WPA2.
WPA2 stands for Wi-Fi Protected Access 2. It acts as a security protocol and is a current standard one used in the industry. It also encrypts traffic on your router network.
It is a better and more secure replacement of the old WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) and even for the WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) technology. Since 2006 all routers manufacturers should use WPA2 security.
This has made the WPA2 a standard security system compatible with all wireless networks. Check out this article on how to activate the WPA2 encryption on your router.
To proceed with securing your wireless network while using a TP-Link wireless router, follow the steps on the article.
However, there is a new security system on the market, which is the WPA3, an upgrade of the previous one. It has been launched to solve a specific security issue related to secure open Wi-Fi networks.
It includes many security upgrades, and it is user friendly. Now it’s easier to log in to the configuration system to tweak different options.
Step 4. Turn off the wireless home network when you are away
Another way to secure your network is by turning off the wireless home network when you are not using it for long periods of time, like when you are traveling. Make sure to disable wireless network on all other devices connected to your router with Ethernet cable.
This will ensure that no one will ever attempt to hack your security network system when you are away.
These are other benefits of turning off your wireless network:
- Enhancing security: You become an invisible target for wireless network hackers.
- Surge protection: Turing off your wireless router when you are away will reduce the chances of it getting damaged by electric surges.
- Noise reduction: This is not a big one, but turning off your router can create a calming effect in your house. Although modern wireless routers are quite enough, there is always that noise that you can’t hear except when you really notice it.
Step 5. Know where to locate your wireless router
This one might be a little unexpected, but the location of your wireless router will also contribute to increasing your security. You might ask yourself, how is this possible?
The optimum place to put your router in is in the middle of your house. This will make sure that you get the same share of wireless signals around the rooms in your home. Second, the signal will be weak outside, which will make it difficult for hackers to deal with it.
Thus, we recommend you placing it in the middle of the house or just as away as possible from outside.
Step 6. Increase your Wi-Fi Security by Using a Strong Network Administrator Password
During the setup of your wireless router, you have to access the configuration menu. For this, you have to use the router’s IP address or a certain website address to make some changes to your router’s and network settings.
Your router will be using default settings with a default password. The default password is most of the time “admin,” which everyone knows about, and especially hackers.
We just want to give you a fact about the number of existing routers in the world. In 2010, there were about 20 Million wireless networks around the world.
Now there are more than 400 Million wireless networks. On the other hand, this has increased the number of other devices such as phones, tablets, laptops, …etc. Also, what has driven this number to grow so exponentially is the fact that data plans are expensive, so people prefer to connect using wireless internet connections.
Step 7. Change your default IP address
Did you know that you can modify your router’s IP address? This is something that not so many people are aware of. To increase your network security, you can also edit your router’s IP address through the configuration menu from your browser. Follow this step-to-step guide to show you how to do it.
- Log into your router’s configuration menu. Just open your browser, type one of the following addresses into the navigation bar http://192.168.1.1 or http://192.168.0.1, and click enter.
- Once you are on the home page, type in the username and password to log in.
- Then, go to the network and click on LAN. You’ll find this on the left side of the screen.
- Modify the IP address and then save the changes.
Now you can log in using the new IP address. Keep this one private, and don’t share it with any visitors.
Step 8. Turn off the DHCP functionality on the router
Another tip to increase your wireless router security is by disabling the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server in your router. This will disable your router from assigning the IP address to connected devices. You should enter your network settings and assign an IP address to the connected devices.
Step 9. Disable Remote Access
Did you know that you can enter your router’s configuration system from a remote system? This is another security breach that networks have. Although most routers can only be accessed through a connected device, it’s possible that some will allow access from a remote device.
Luckily you can turn off this option to prevent hackers from entering your network settings.
To disable this, go to the configuration menu and type into the search tab “Remote access” or “Remote administration” and disable it.
Step 10. Keep your Router’s Software Updated
Routers’ soft wares play a crucial part in the security of your network. And like any other software, it might contain security breaches that might offer an opportunity for hackers to get into your network system. Most of the routers do not have the option of auto-update, so you will have to set this manually.
Even if you have a router’s software that can be updated automatically, you have to activate this option from the configuration menu of your wireless router. Nevertheless, don’t neglect this step, because if you do, you’re going to leave a door open for hackers.
Here is what security experts say about the benefits of updating your software for your security system.
Step 11. Secure your Wi-Fi Network with a Firewall
Firewalls have also proved to add a layer of security to your wireless network. They aren’t just useless computer programs. Hardware firewalls have almost the same function as the software ones. Most modern routers will have built-in firewalls to protect you from potential hackers.
To find out more about which routers have firewalls and how to enable them, you can check out this article. We highly recommend that you keep this one activated.
In case your router does not have one, you can install a firewall device for your router to increase your network security against any cyber-attacks.
Step 12. Enhance Protection for most Used Devices
You’ve come a long way with this.
This is the last step/tip that we recommend you follow to keep yourself and your family protected. It is essential not to leave any security breaches open for online criminals.
You can further improve your network security with these following tips:
- Keep your devices updated with the most recent software available.
- Apply the most recent security patches to your networks system to not leave any breach open for hackers.
- Make sure that the most connected devices to your wireless network have antivirus or anti-malware security software installed. Check this article, which will answer your question on whether to install an antivirus or an anti-malware software.
- Protect your devices using different security measures. These include specialized security software, antivirus programs, and traffic filtering software. You might also use an anti-malware program like Thor Foresight or Malwarebytes.
Securing your wireless network system should be something to think about and act upon once you purchase your wireless router. If you genuinely care about you and your family, you should definitely take the measures that we mentioned above in this article. They can be done by anyone and are to set up.
Wireless network security systems can easily be hacked if you don’t follow these steps and tips. Your password alone won’t stand in front of experienced hackers.
We hope this article will be helpful enough for you to secure yourself.