Wi-Fi Best Practices

This topic in particular will cover a few of the best practices to follow for your wireless network at home. This is certainly something that many people don’t consider – they put a password on the wireless and leave it alone past that. But there’s so much more that you can configure, and make your network so much more secure! Such as the following:

Change the router password – This is a common mistake that many people make. The default for many routers is for the username and password to both be admin, or perhaps the password is password. This allows anyone to hack your router from the beginning, and lock you out of your own network. Big no-no. Change it to something that you can remember, but something other than banana or fluffy.

Make the wireless security WPA2 Personal using AES encryption – This is very important. All previous types of security have been “hacked,” meaning that there are hacking programs that are now available to the Internet underworld to crack your password anyways in a matter of minutes. Using WPA2 is simply making it that much harder to do, and takes little effort to configure.

Enable MAC Address filtering – I’m a little hesitant to throw this in as an option, but I do so because I personally use this as a final layer of security. It ensures that only devices you approve of can connect to your network. This does, however, require much more hands-on management, since you’ll need to add a new device to the router every time you buy something new, or a client or friend comes over and wants to connect. There is a definite balancing act between whether you want more security at the cost of convenience. Many networks do just fine without this last layer.

You most likely noticed that I didn’t say how to configure these settings. The reason for this is because the settings are found in different places depending on the model of your router – there is no “This is how you do this” step-by-step process for this, but rather a list of terms and what they do so you can better understand how your router works. Learn all you can about your network, and as always, don’t hesitate to contact me for further info. After all, what is an IT consultant without questions to answer?

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