Computer Security Tips –
Wireless Router Security
Wireless Router Security
A wireless router makes an excellent hardware firewall. It can protect your computer by blocking unsolicited incoming network traffic and even blocking undesirable outgoing network traffic. If you have a wireless router, you should follow all the steps below to secure it. Wireless is also known as Wi-Fi.
- Follow all the steps in the Router Security section then follow the ones below.
- Switch off Bluetooth whenever you’re not using it. Reasoning: Bluetooth is a wireless protocol that allows your computer to communicate wirelessly with mobile phones, wireless printers, etc. Bluetooth is not secure, so it’s highly vulnerable to hacker attack. N.B. Bluetooth is a wireless technology but it has nothing to do with connecting your computer to a wireless router via Wi-Fi.
- Switch off Wi-Fi whenever you’re not using it. Reasoning: Better to be safe than sorry!
- Do not use the default SSID because doing that lowers your security. Instead, set the SSID to something unique and meaningful to you but avoid using personal information in the SSID because everyone will be able to see it.
- Use MAC Address Filtering to stop strangers accidentally accessing your wireless network. (A MAC Address, also called a Physical Address, is a worldwide unique 12 digit hexadecimal number associated with each network card in your computer. You can see the MAC Address of every network card in a computer running Microsoft Windows by typing “ipconfig /all” at a DOS prompt.) Note that MAC Address Filtering wont stop serious hackers from accessing your network because serious hackers can easily alter their network card’s MAC Address to be the same as the MAC Address of one of the computers in your network.
- Use WPA-PSK Encryption to stop strangers and hackers accessing your wireless network. WPA-PSK with a good strong password (see Password Security) will stop strangers and hackers accessing your wireless network.
- If your wireless router has the option (and all your computer network cards also support it), use the WPA2-PSK option, not WPA-PSK.
- If your router has the option (and all your computer network cards also support it), use the AES encryption option, not TKIP. Reasoning: TKIP is not as secure as AES.
- Avoid using WEP Encryption unless you have no other choice. Reasoning: It’s not very secure. Hackers with the appropriate software can crack your password then both surf the Internet using your network connection, and read all of your wireless network traffic.
|Copyright © 2009 Andrew White||Created: 12 Aug 2009|
|Page authored by Andrew White||Updated: 09 Nov 2012|
Wireless Router Security, hardware firewall, home network security, unsolicited network traffic, WiFi, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, MAC Address Filtering, WEP Encryption, WPA-PSK Encryption, WPA2-PSK, TKIP, AES, Computer Security Tips