Is your internet running slow or does your bandwidth limit finish much earlier and you have to pay hefty internet bills? If the answer is yes, there are high chances that your bandwidth is being used by your neighbors or some unidentified users. The hacking can also pose a security risk to your personal files and the cases have been registered where hackers have used innocent people’s networks for illegal activities. Wireless(Wi-Fi) routers are more prone to hacking as compared to wired networks so it is of utmost importance to secure your wireless router from being hacked.
How to Secure Wireless Router: 7 Best Steps
Change Default Login Password
The first step to secure your wireless network(Wi-Fi) is to change the default password which is factory pre-set. To do so you need to login to your router’s configuration page to change the settings. You can access the router from the browser by typing 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1 and by typing admin as username and password as the password. You can also check the login credentials from the manual of the router. After you have logged in you need to go to administration/management settings and change the password there.
Change Wireless Network Name
Wireless network name or technically SSID is the name the devices in range will find your router. By default, the SSID name is the Router’s Brand name for example for the TPlink router the SSID will be TP-LINK. You need to change it to prevent hackers from finding the router easily.
As you can see in the image above, you have the option to disable the SSID broadcasting. This is one of the best ways to enhance the wireless router security. Once it is disabled, your wireless router will be invisible to the outside world and nobody will be able to breach its security. But in order to connect to it, you need to manually fill in its name in the device that you intend to connect to wireless router.
To secure your wireless(Wi-Fi) network, you need to encrypt the wireless signals emitted by Wi-Fi routers. There are various encryption options available that include RADIUS, WEP, WPA, and WPA2. Among all these encryption methods, WPA2 is the latest and provides maximum security to wireless router. To enable WPA2 encryption, you need to move to wireless security and select WPA2 personal from security mode. In the paraphrase, you need to input a password consisting of letters, symbols, and special characters.
Every Laptop or mobile device that has Network hardware has its own unique MAC address. You can add the Mac address of all the devices in your home or office network in the MAC filter list to only allow them to connect and disallowing all the others to connect, not in the list.
Update Router Firmware
The Router manufacturers update the router’s firmware from time to time and release latest security patches to counter new vulnerabilities emerging quite often. You need to check the manufacturer’s site occasionally to check the latest firmware release and update the router from its configuration page.
Turn On Router Firewall
To safeguard wireless router from hackers on the internet, you need to enable inbuilt firewall of the wireless router. A firewall is a useful tool that prevents the unwanted traffic to crusade the router and in turn your wireless network.
Disable Remote Router Access
Apart from managing the router by connecting directly to the router through a wire or wireless technology, there is an option to administer the router from a remote location on the internet. If this option is enabled, it will provide another loophole in the security of the router. It is recommended to disable the remote access as shown in the image.
To secure your wireless network, try to adopt all these methods discussed above and I hope it will keep your neighbors and hackers away from trespassing your secured wireless(Wi-Fi) router.
Image and Video credit: Netgear