When it comes to wireless probably one of the most confusing thing is the security. How can you secure your wireless home network so that only you use it? The two most popular ways to secure your home wireless network is either using WEP or WPA. But what is WEP and WPA? And what's the difference? It's all so confusing ,we know.

How to Secure Your Home Wireless Network?

By: Stuart King

Wireless networks are great and allow us to set up networks quickly, easily and without the hassle of physically running cables etc.

However wireless networks need to be secure from outside / unauthorised users otherwise people can use your network for their own malicious intentions. An example of this is people using your wireless connection to connect to the internet and download illegal content. As it is your internet connection it is your responsibility.

So how do you secure your wireless network?

Well there are several things you can do so here are some basic security steps:

  • TURN OFF SSID Broadcasting - Once you have all your required computers (wireless clients / devices)¬†on your network, TURN OFF SSID broadcasting so that no one can see your wireless network.
  • Change the name of your SSID from default to something else. For example a SSID named Netgear easily identifies your network and its hardware.
  • Change default router username and passwords. Most routers have the same, default admin username and password. So all an intruder has to do is login to your router using the defaults and then lock you out.
  • Use MAC address filtering - set which devices can connect to your wireless network by their MAC address. Use ipconfig / all to identify your MAC address.
  • Use IP filtering or IP address reservations so that only those IP's can access the network.
  • Use Port filtering / blocking to block ports you do not need open.
  • Use authentication - either PSK or EAP - DO NOT LEAVE AUTHENTICATION OPEN.
  • Use encryption to protect your data. WEP and WPA are 2 types of encryption however WPA is recommended.
  • Set logon hours so that people cannot access your network out of hours.
  • Use a wireless network analyser such as Netstumbler (free) to test your network.

Using the above wireless network security steps will help protect your wireless network from unauthorised use and prying eyes.

About the Author

Written by: Stuart King

I am a Microsoft, CISCO and CompTIA certified IT professional. You can view my website at:

www.lanarkshireitservices.co.uk

(ArticlesBase SC #631356)

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