Your wifi network is your wireless portal to everything online, but what many may not know is that, if left unsecure, it can offer an access point for criminals to gain access to every computer and mobile device that is connected to that network, which means that any sensitive information stored on those devices is accessible to them. You can use these tips to help keep your network more secure.
- Use a Password
Creating a strong password is key to keeping your network secure. It helps protect your files and personal information from hackers. Without a password, your network will be completely open to anybody within Wi-Fi range. For help creating a secure password, go to cybersecurity.mo.gov/tools/password_gen/.
- Turn off remote access features
By default, your Wi-Fi router typically has features that allow you to access devices and file storage from a remote location, without being connected to the router’s signal. Unless you know how to set up and secure this type of connection, it should be kept turned off.
- Keep your router updated
Periodically, your router’s manufacturer will release updates to improve the security and functionality of your router. Without these updates, your router can become vulnerable to an increasing number of hackers and malicious software, so make sure your router’s software stays updated.
- Change your Router Settings
Most Wi-Fi routers have a default Network Name, the fact that it is default means that the name of your network is openly known to anyone. Consult your router’s manual on how to change this. In addition, you should change the admin credentials for your router, these are also typically set to known defaults and if not changed, anybody can log into your network as an administrator.
- Turn off your network when not in use
Your router will be in operation most of the time, streaming movies and TV, playing games, checking email, and various other activities throughout the day. Even at night, your computers and other devices are doing security and functionality updates. However, if you are going to be away from home for an extended period of time, such as on a vacation or business trip, turning off your router will make it impossible to anyone to access your network.