An unprotected wireless network is incredibly easy to hack. It's essential that you protect your Wi-Fi LAN from hardcore hackers, not to mention nosy neighbours. Good wireless security isn't hard to implement, either, provided you know which steps to take.
In this quick six-step tutorial, we'll show you how to implement security measure to protect your Wi-Fi network. To demonstrate we'll be using Windows XP, a wireless router and related software.
Step One: Change the default password
Default passwords for popular routers and access points are easy to find online, so therefore, it is essential that you change the default password as soon as you install a WiFi device. To do so, launch your wireless hardware's setup software and enter a new password.
Step Two: Change the default SSID
Change the default SSID, which is your network's name. Load your router's setup software, look for the SSID name and change it to one that doesn't describe your location or other personal info.
Step Three: Disable SSID broadcast
By default, your Wi-Fi network broadcasts its name to all wireless users within range. With broadcast disabled, your network is invisible to your neighbours.
Step Four: Activate encryption
Go to Start/Control Panel/Wireless Network Setup Wizard. If this is a new Wi-Fi LAN, check "Set up a new wireless network." Enter SSID and complete Network Setup Wizard.
Step Five: Use MAC address filtering
Use MAC address filtering to create a list of devices that can access your network or PC. To determine what your MAC address is, select Start/Run and type cmd and then ipconfig/all on the command line. Hit Enter. The "Physical Address" is your MAC address.
Step Six: Enter MAC address into network software
The MAC address you found in the previous step can be added to a select list of devices that can access your LAN. This is done in your router's setup software (if MAC address filtering is supported).