Securing Your Wireless Broadband- 4 Recommendations
Wireless broadband internet is, perhaps, the most well-known form of broadband internet connection. Many cafes, restaurants, and offices make use of wireless broadband because it's easy to deploy with minimal cable installation.
This form of broadband, however, has been adapted for home use too. Wireless broadband owners must learn new, and sometimes technically tricky, wireless broadband internet security skills to keep their wireless broadband secured and out of reach from hackers.
Let's cover some important and easy security measures you can implement immediate to keep your wireless broadband safe and secure.
1. Change the Default Administrative Password
This is a very important step that should be carried out by every wireless broadband internet owner when they reset their wireless router or install a new router. Routers are a very important components of wireless broadband internet and are setup with default administrative usernames and passwords. With these credentials, a hacker can access all the wireless broadband network settings, configurations, and monitor your online activities.
It is easy for anyone to research these default wireless router credentials by conducting a few simple Google searches and downloading a PDF copy of your router's manual or installation guide. There are techniques to determine the type of wireless router you have installed or hackers can try the most common router default settings until they are able to successfully log into your wireless router.
Once a hacker has your default administrative username and password, they can take full advantage of your wireless router and begin monitoring your Internet activity and access your wireless network to connect to devices on your network at home.
For maximum safety download or read your wireless router manual or set guide and immediately change your default administrative password(s) to a secured one that is difficult to guess. Google offers some great ideas about how to pick a secure password, learn more here.
2. Disable Your SSID Broadcast
A wireless SSID is the name that identifies your wireless broadband to all wireless enabled devices with reach of your wireless signal.
The SSID is needed to connect to your wireless router. There are ways to determine your SSID even when it is hidden, however it does make it more difficult for a casual hacker to find your network and begin an hack attack. Hackers typically look for the easiest networks to access so adding any barriers will make your wireless immediately less attractive to any potential hacker.
However, it makes it easy for hackers to hack your wireless network through this. If you want your wireless broadband to be secured, you have to leave your SSID disabled. If you leave your SSID enabled, there is the chance of an outsider breaking into your wireless network without your permission; hackers can hijack your wireless from you with your SSID enabled.
3. Turn On A Firewall
A firewall is the digital traffic security profession that polices your network boundaries. It can be used to prevent traffic from entering and leaving the areas of your network.
There are different types of firewalls. Some are hardware-based and others are software-based. Your operating system may also feature a software-based firewall.
The firewall inside your router is usually a hardware-based firewall.
Firewalls are an excellent method for preventing Internet-borne port-based attacks. Firewalls can also prevent an infected computer inside your network from attacking other computers by preventing malicious traffic from leaving your network.
Now that you know a little bit about the benefits of firewalls, consider checking to see if your wireless router has a built-in firewall.
The chances are good that the router you already own has a built-in firewall, because 8 out of 10 of the 10 Best Wireless Routers, according to PC Magazine, have firewalls as a listed feature.
Check to See If Your Router has a Built-In Firewall:
Open a browser window and log into your router's administrative console by typing in the routers IP address. Your router is likely to have what is known as a non-routable internal IP address such as 192.168.1.1 or 10.0.0.1 as it's address.
Below are some of the standard admin interface addresses used by some of the more common wireless router manufacturers. You may have to consult your specific router's manual for the correct address.
The following list is some of the default IP addresses based on my research and may not be accurate for your specific make or model:
Linksys - 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1
DLink - 192.168.0.1 or 10.0.0.1
Apple - 10.0.1.1ASUS - 192.168.1.1
Buffalo - 192.168.11.1
NetGear - 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.0.227
Look for a configuration page labeled "Security" or "Firewall". This indicates that your router has a built-in firewall as one of its features
Enable and Configure Your Wireless Router's Built-in Firewall:
(1) Once you've located the configuration section, look for an entry called "SPI Firewall", "Firewall", or something similar.
(2) You should see an "Enable" button next to the entry. Once you've enabled the firewall, click the "Save" or "Apply" button to commit the change.
(3) Your router will likely let you know it is going to reboot to apply the settings.
(4) After you've enabled the firewall, you can use the default settings which are often sufficient. If you are a power user, go ahead and tune the firewall rules.
(5) When you have completed setting up your firewall, you should test your firewall to make sure you can connect to the Internet and home network.
4. Reduce the Broadcast Footprint of your Wireless Network
Broadcasting your wireless broadband beyond your area is dangerous for the security of your wireless broadband connection. Some routers let you reduce the transmit power of your wireless router so your signal is confined to a smaller area of your home or building.
If a hacker can't reliably receive the wireless signal, they cannot access your wireless network. If you have a wireless broadcast power setting in your router, reduce it to the minimum and gradually increase the power until it covers all the areas in your home that require wireless access. If you don't use your basement or a bedroom for Internet access, do not increase power to cover these areas. The smaller your wireless broadcast footprint, the more secure your wireless network is.