How to protect Wi-Fi from hackers Guide

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Your home probably has a WiFi router to provide Internet access for the whole family. When people walk by, they ask for a password so they can view something on their smartphone or show vacation photos stored in the cloud. Before long, many people knew your WiFi password and were able to connect to your router every time they passed your house. In an apartment building, the signal from your router is broadcast to a neighboring apartment. Unlike physical networks, WiFi systems can extend beyond the walls of your home.

Once the access password is out in the world, it is very difficult to control who can access your home network. Therefore, you should consider implementing some changes and routines that will protect you from internet intruders, snoopers and thieves. You have to deal with two major security issues. The first is that you need to control who can actually access your network. The second problem is the signal footprint. If people outside your home can get a signal from your router, they can also capture the data and get all your passwords.

How to protect Wi-Fi from hackers

By taking a few simple precautions with your Wi-Fi router, you can make it much harder to hack. As is the case with many things in life, preventing Wi-Fi hacking is cheaper and easier than dealing with a hacked router. Once that happens, your problem will become considerably more difficult, though not impossible, to solve.

Change your router admin credentials

All routers have a username and password that are used to access your router settings. Every time you get a router, whether new or used, immediately change the username and password. Hackers know the default administrator credentials from the manufacturer for almost all popular routers on the market. If someone can reach your Wi-Fi network, they can try to log in to your router with that information.

If you never updated your login credentials after getting your router, you are setting yourself up as an easy mark for a router password hack. And if you bought a router from someone else, you can’t be sure who has that old login information. Either way, change it ASAP. Set a new router password using strong password creation practices or create a truly uncrackable password with random strings of characters to prevent hackers from easily gaining access to your router.

Enable WPA2 (or WPA3) encryption

WPA2 and WPA3, the second and third versions of the Wi-Fi Protected Access security protocol, protect your router from unwanted access with AES encryption. It’s the same type of encryption we use at Avast for our super secure Avast SecureLine VPN, so you know it’s good. Any router worth buying will be WPA2 enabled, and some newer models may have WPA3.

Enable WPA2 or WPA3 encryption so anyone who wants to connect to your protected router needs your Wi-Fi password. And be sure to set a strong password by following smart password creation habits. These simple steps will give any aspiring Wi-Fi hacker a serious challenge.

Change your router’s network name (SSID)

While configuring your router, changing your admin credentials and setting a strong password, change the SSID as well. SSID stands for Service Set Identifier, which, in everyday terms, is the name of your Wi-Fi network. Newer routers often display the brand name of the router in the SSID, and Wi-Fi hackers can use that information to help them crack your password. Instead, set a custom network name so they don’t know what kind of router you have.

The more clues you give a hacker, the easier their job will be. Get creative with your Wi-Fi network name – make it long and complex. WPA encryption uses the SSID as part of the algorithm, so avoiding common or default network names will make your network more resistant to password cracking methods such as rainbow tables. Plus, it’s fun to give your neighbors something to laugh about.

Disable WPS

Along with WPA2 or WPA3, many routers also have WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup), which means you can press a button or enter a PIN to connect, instead of using the password. While clearly more convenient, the level of security plummets when using buttons or PINs instead of passwords.

Anyone who can physically touch your router will be able to press the WPS button and connect. And a short PIN is much easier to crack with a brute force attack than a long and complex password. Unfortunately, not all routers support turning off WPS features, but if yours does, please turn off WPS as soon as possible and set a password.

Disable wireless/remote management

Remote management allows you to log in to your router’s management settings from anywhere in the world. But unless you’re a developer, the chances are slim that you’ll ever need to do this. If you disable this feature, you will only be able to access your settings when your computer is physically connected to your router with an Ethernet cable. Turning off remote administration is a convenient way to keep hackers out.

Update your router firmware

Firmware is the name of the software that governs a specific piece of hardware in this case, your router. Just like your computer’s operating system or any of the programs and applications you use, firmware can be upgraded. Firmware updates can protect your router against any vulnerabilities that may be discovered in older versions of its firmware. Some routers will be able to check for firmware updates, but you can always log into your router’s admin settings, find the firmware section, and take a look for yourself.

Use a cybersecurity tool that protects your Wi-Fi network

One of the easiest and safest ways to protect your Wi-Fi network is to use a Wi-Fi monitoring tool that will automatically monitor your wireless network for you, saving you the hassle of manually monitoring it yourself. Avast’s free antivirus software has a built-in Wi-Fi Inspector that constantly scans your network for any suspicious activity or device, so you know exactly what’s happening on your Wi-Fi at all times. Secure your Wi-Fi network, get rid of any devices that don’t belong there, and rest easy knowing that if any Wi-Fi hacker is sitting on your network, you’ll be the first to know.

Fight against hackers

Hackers have a wide range of tools that they can use to crack your passwords and gain access to your devices. They can install malware that allows them to steal passwords, redirect your Internet traffic, or even take over your computer. Or they can trick you into visiting infected websites that spread viruses, download malware onto your device, or capture your data.

Hackers can even buy your passwords after they are exposed in a data breach. But you can protect yourself against all of these tricks and more with Avast One, which has a built-in behavioral shield. Avast One is an all-in-one security and privacy tool that fights hacking on multiple fronts: defending against viruses and other malware, blocking malicious websites, and helping you protect your data after a breach. Download it for free today.

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ct Wi-Fi from hackers

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