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With increased use of wireless technology, it has become essential to understand and secure your wireless network from potential threats or damage that may be caused by an attacker lurking within the range of your wireless network. Most wireless devices are now plug-n-play devices, which means you don’t need any configuration in order to use them. You simply plug them in and start using them. Nevertheless, configuring some of the security parameters can help you encrypt your wireless internet connection and protect you from various wireless network attacks. Here are some key points to consider for securing your wireless network.
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Ways to Encrypt Wireless Internet Connection
Secure wireless access point or router with strong password
Every router has an administrator password that is required to access the router’s configuration. This password is set to default by the router manufacturer, which is either set as the manufacturer’s name or simply as ‘password’. As soon as you connect to a wireless router, you should immediately change the administrator password to a more secure and strong password. Since you will not be entering this password very often, write it down somewhere so that you don’t forget it.
Never broadcast SSID
SSID stands for Service Set Identifier. With SSID, it becomes easier to setup clients in a wireless network, since you don’t need to know the network name. Stopping a router from broadcasting SSID ensures that your network remains undetected to your neighbors and passersby. However, network scanners and other wireless scanning devices may still be able to detect your wireless internet connection.
Enable Wi-Fi Access Protection (WAP), instead of Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP)
WAP protection is more secure in comparison to WEP. With WEP you can only use numbers and alphabets in a password, whereas, with WAP you can you any combination of characters of any length to encrypt your wireless internet connection. Also, WEP has a weaker security that makes it easier to crack the network.
Allow Mac Filtering
Mac filtering allows your wireless router to connect to only those networks whose IP addresses have been configured in the router. So, by turning on the Mac filtering option, you can limit the router to your system only. This also ensures that no unauthorized person can gain access to your encrypt wireless network connection.
Disable Remote Administration
Some routers have the option of remote administration that allows you to access your router remotely. However, you should never access your router remotely, unless and until your router allows only specific IP addresses to be used with remote administration. By default, this feature is turned off, but it is better to check.
WEP is better after all
Most old routers don’t have many security options other than WEP. So, it is better to use a WEP security than no security at all. Even though WEP is less secure than WAP, but it does offer a 128-bit encryption security, which is better than having no security at all.