A home network is a collection of gadgets (computers, game consoles, printers, phones, tablets, and wearable’s) that connect to the internet and to one another.
There are two ways to connect a home network:
- A wired network for connecting printers and scanners.
- A wireless network that links devices like tablets and smartphones without the use of wires.
The importance of a secure home network in terms of internet security cannot be overstated. Hackers can use weak networks to carry out a variety of cybercrimes, including malware installation, botnet creation and others in an attempt to steal data or your identity. In this article, we’ll walk you through the most important steps to take to secure your home network, so that you and your family can be digitally secure at home.
Wired or Wireless?
The first thing to think about when setting up your home network is whether you want a “wired” or a “wireless” network. A wired connection isn’t always an option because most households and companies use Wi-Fi for easy connectivity. Some people, however, prefer a wired network because it provides more reliability and all of your network devices are connected directly to a router via an Ethernet connection.
It’s crucial to know that most wireless routers use two frequency bands: 2.4GHz and 5GHz, if you’re trying to set up a wireless network. The 2.4GHz band uses longer waves to provide broader coverage, while the 5GHz band is newer, faster, and more reliable, making it ideal for smaller homes or flats. But, in the end, it’s all about speed vs. range, and what your devices require.
Essential steps to setting up a Secure Network
- Change the name of your router:
The manufacturer provides the default ID, which is known as a service set identifier (SSID) or an “extended service set identifier” (ESSID). Change the name of your router to something unique to you that no one else can guess.
- Change the preset passphrase on your router:
Hackers will find it much easier to gain access to your network if you leave the default password untouched. It is essential that you alter it as quickly as possible. A powerful pass is defined as a statement with at least 12 characters. Concentrate on positive ideas or phrases that you enjoy thinking about and that are simple to recall (for example, “I enjoy country music”). You may even use spaces on several websites!
- Review security options:
When choosing your router’s security level, choose WPA2 or WPA if it’s available; these levels are more secure than WEP.
- Create a guest passphrase:
Guests can access networks via separate guest passes on some routers. It’s a good idea to set up a guest network if you have a lot of visitors.
- Use a Firewall:
Hackers can use your device to send out your personal information without your permission if you have a firewall installed. While antivirus software checks incoming email and data, a firewall acts as a watchdog, monitoring for unauthorised access and restricting communications with sources you don’t trust. A firewall is probably pre-installed on your operating system and/or security software, but make sure you turn it on.
Learning how to protect your data from hackers by securing your home’s WiFi is a must. Given the number of devices that connect to our network, it’s important that you take every precaution to prevent undesirable actors from gaining access. If you can’t practically implement all of the tips above, at least try a few to make small but effective changes.