Want to know how to protect the WiFi in your home or business? If you use these tips to secure your home WiFi from hackers, then you’ll be far ahead of most people.
1. Update your WiFi router firmware
Updating your WiFi router is critically important to having a safe WiFi network.
2. Use strong WiFi encryption
Always use the most recent encryption standard.
3. Use a secure WPA2 passphrase
It may seem stupidly obvious, but don’t use a password which is easy for a person to guess! Example: A person might be targeting you personally, at your residence, and therefore would know what your address is. Therefore, using your address as your WiFi password, is a bad idea.
4. Check for rogue Wi-Fi access points
If you ever browsed the nearby WiFi networks on your phone or laptop, you may have noticed one unfortunate thing: you don’t know who owns them.
The only way you can guess is by looking at the name of the WiFi network, but you still have no idea whether it’s run by a hacker, or whether it was set up by someone for wholesome purposes.
If you have a laptop running Windows or an iPhone or Android, and you want to know which nearby WiFi network is safe to use, then it’ll be mostly guesswork as to which you can consider as ‘safe’, and you should therefore treat them all as unsafe.
A hacker can easily sit in a cafe with a laptop and create a WiFi network which you could be tricked into joining.
If you see any nearby WiFi networks which have the same or similar names to yours, then someone may have set up a rogue WiFi network to target you or your customers.
This technique which hackers use, is to trick people into joining their WiFi network and, once you have, then hackers can do any number of things:
If you see any nearby WiFi networks which you suspect are malicious, then someone may have set up a rogue WiFi network.
5. Create a separate guest WiFi network
If you want to share your home Internet with someone, but you don’t trust their computer (maybe you suspect that their computer may have a computer virus), then one way to mitigate the risk is to create a guest WiFi network.
This will allow the suspected computer to access the Internet, but not the rest your home/office network, and will keep your own computers safe from theirs.
6. Change the guest WiFi password regularly
If you do set up a guest WiFi network then you might want to change the password regularly. Why? Because, over time, you’ll lose track of who you’ve given the password to.
If you don’t know who even has access to your Internet connection, then you could end up with a very big problem!
7. Hide your WiFi network
This option is suitable for paranoid people. There could be legitimate reasons for wanting to hide your WiFi network, but most of the time, and for most people there is no need, because your WiFi network should already be set up with a strong, difficult-to-guess passphrase.
8. Enable MAC address authentication
This option is suitable for people who are very security-conscious. The way it woks is by allowing (or denying) specific devices based on the unique identifier of the WiFi adaptor inside a device, known as the MAC address.
It means that even when the correct WiFi password/passphrase is used to join the WiFi network, it will only work if the individual device has specifically been granted access. This makes it very secure and provides additional protection if your WiFi password were ever to be stolen or given to someone who shouldn’t have it.
9. Disable Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS)
WPS was created to make the process of joining a WiFi network easier but, with many things in computer security; the easier it is, the less secure it is.
In the earlier days of WiFi routers, this was a much more relevant problem. Today, it’s more of an optional extra, but I personally still like to do it — especially on any router which has been supplied to you by your Internet Service Provider (ISP), as those tend to have the worst security.
Further reading: https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2014/09/02/using-wps-may-be-even-more-dangerous/