Our 5 easy steps to secure your wireless router will guide you throughout the process in creating a more secure network connection. There have been many cases in which devices at times pick up Wi-Fi networks whilst walking down a road. And no they’re not hotspots, well at least some of them aren’t. As a matter of fact those connections could possibly be personal networks that are accidentally left open. And in such cases anyone would be granted unrestricted access to them, putting all confidential information like account details, passwords and others at stake. So to ensure the safety of any PC connected to the network, our 5 easy steps to secure your wireless router are surely to keep the unwanted guest where they belong.
1. Change Admin password: Most routers when purchased come with default username and password such as ‘Admin’ for both or a blank field for the latter. To maintain a secure connection, it’s highly recommended that you change this password to prevent anyone from accessing network settings besides you.
To do so, you’ll first need to find the router’s IP address which can be done through the CMD prompt from the ‘run’ menu. Further on, when the DOS-like window (command prompt) appears, entering ipconfig will bring up LAN details and the IP address of each device connected. Also, the router address will always be shown as ‘default gateway.’
Once acquired, enter the IP address into any web browser and then the username/password when prompted. With the interface that features a number of tabs and menus, navigate to ‘Tools’ and then ‘Admin’ under which you’ll find options for changing the password.
Displaying two input fiends under ‘Administrator,’ entering the desired password twice, once into the ‘new password’ and second into the ‘Confirm password’ box, and further hitting apply will save the changes made.
2. Changing network name (SSID): With the Administrator password changed, the next step is to rename the wireless network. Since all companies set the default name as the model number, hackers get an upper-hand through this information that makes it convenient for them to breach into the network. Hence, to prevent that from happening, changing the SSID will prove beneficial. Options to carry out these operations can be found in the ‘Wireless’ menu under the ‘Home’ tab.
3. Enabling encryption: By enabling encryption, you can easily foolproof your wireless network. With a number of options like WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy), WPA and WPA2 available, each type when selected offers connection security that encrypts the network with a pre-shared key, required for accessing the network. Encryption options are located just below the SSID name shown in step 2.
4. MAC address filtering: With MAC (Media Access Control) filtering turned on, you can easily allow or deny any computer from accessing the network. As each device hosts a MAC address, the filter will block any PC that isn’t recognized by it, like when the MAC address doesn’t match with the ones saved on the router. To enable this feature, navigate to the ‘Advanced’ tab and select the ‘Filters’ menu. Also, each address can be found through the CMD prompt under the name of ‘Physical address’ as shown in step 1
5. Firmware update/Backup: Firmware updates are always crucial. To know if any upgrades are available, refer to the company’s website and browse for your product. On downloading the update, the ‘Firmware’ menu under the ‘Tools’ tab allows you to do so by manually browsing for the file. Additionally, in case for some reason you reset the router to its factory state, all settings can be conveniently backed up and restored later on.
On carrying out the aforementioned steps, you can rest assure the wireless network to always remain secure from most vulnerabilities. Also, with the 5 easy steps to secure your wireless router, personal information and data are less liable to fall in the wrong hands.