5 Broadband Wireless Internet Security Tips

Couple on computerby Kevin Campbell

If you’ve got a wireless broadband Internet network set up in your home or office, one thing you should be concerned with is security. There are a number of downsides to leaving your network unprotected.

For starters, someone in the apartment next to yours, a next door neighbor or even someone driving by your home or office could get access to your network while you’re completely unaware. Not only are they sapping your bandwidth and slowing down the Internet connection that you pay for, you’re also responsible for any activities (including illegal activities like piracy) these people engage in while on your connection. Because of this, improving your broadband wireless Internet security as much as possible is the first thing you should do after setting up the network.

Getting started

Belkin Wireless RouterWhen you originally set up your router, one of the first things you’re asked to do is select an encryption type. When prompted, always make sure to select “WEP” (wired equivalent privacy) from the list of options. Of the two popular types of security available for most broadband Internet routers and modems, WEP is by far the most secure. WPA, or Wi-Fi Protected Access, has a number of flaws that allow passwords to be broken more easily.

Password protection

Make sure you’re using a wireless password that’s a series of numbers and letters. Don’t use full words, as those are much easier to guess than random combinations of digits and characters. While using the word “password” as your wireless Internet password may be easy to remember, it is also easy to guess. Using the phrase “pa55w0rd,” on the other hand, is much more difficult due to the introduction of the numbers.

Dell laptopDon’t give your wireless password out to every last person who enters your home. Many people break laws on the Internet every day without even knowing it. Don’t let one of your friends accidentally commit intellectual property theft by downloading a song over your Wi-Fi, as you will be legally responsible for that activity.

Change your password every so often. A general rule of thumb is that you should change your broadband wireless Internet password at least twice a year for the maximum amount of security. Because wireless networks broadcast 24 hours a day, malicious individuals have an unlimited number of changes to guess your password and gain access to your network. By changing your password every so often you can make it more difficult for people to gain access to the wireless network at your home or office.

Firewall protection

Use some other Firewall software besides Windows Firewall. Though Windows Firewall comes natively installed in the Windows operating system and offers a basic level of protection, it has a number of flaws that can be exploited quite easily by those with advanced knowledge of computers. For the best results, invest in an Internet security suite that’s updated on a regular basis like Norton Internet Security or McAfee Internet Security.

 

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