Computer Networks & You
What exactly is a computer network? In essence, it's group of two or more computers that are connected together in some way, usually by the Internet or by an internal connection. Having a network between groups of computers make it easier for people to share and retrieve documents from other people or businesses and even each other.
While computer networking was of vital importance within businesses and corporations, once the personal computer found its way into the homes of individuals, networking began to encompass both business and personal use. And why not? Most homes will have at a minimum of two computers in the house, whether they be laptop computers or desktop computers. Setting up a home network is great for sharing music, videos, printers, and other files with friends and family members.
While there are many advantages to having a home network, one of the big disadvantages is that of security. It's not that home networks aren't secure, it's just that individuals don't know enough or anything at all about network security issues, so they do not take the time to properly set up their networks to keep their information safe.
There are two types of networks - that of wired networks and wireless networks. Wireless is probably the most popular due to the surge in popularity of laptops, but many times these networks are unsecured. Unsecured networks are those networks that are not password protected, meaning anyone that comes into the radius of your wireless signal, they can use your Internet connection. Not only that, but they will also have access to your files and documents as they are now a part of your network.
Not securing your wireless network can invite trouble, like thieves and hackers, who can gain information from your files and documents in order to find contact listings, usernames, and passwords to banking or financial information and even websites you visit. This can lead to a variety of problems, such as becoming a victim of phishing scams or identity theft.