WiFi protection

Browse securely in a WiFi

Would you intentionally leave your windows and doors open to intruders? The answer to this question is of course “no”! But is this the case when it comes to your WiFi network? It is probably the case that only the select few worry about the encryption of their home wireless network. Yet securing your home WiFi against attackers and hackers is important, and all it takes is to configure a few settings. As soon as criminal acts such as the distribution of copyright protected data or hacker attacks on third parties are carried out via your unprotected WiFi, you as operator of the wireless network are held accountable. In addition to this, in Germany wireless networks must be encrypted to protect against the abuse of unknown attackers, as the operator is liable for copyright infringements.

In just a few simple steps you can ensure the security of your wireless network – thus also assuring your own security, seeing as anonymous browsing on your home network is not difficult! You should therefore take a few minutes to take our tips on board and choose SpyOFF for secure browsing!

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Correct encryption for added security

There are a few encryption methods available for your base station, e.g. WEP, WPA or WPA2. These differ in a number of ways. However, generally speaking it is recommended that you secure yourself using the most recent encryption method. The current standard encryption is WPA2 PSK. However, it should be mentioned that some older devices do not support this key. All that said, the securing of wireless networks with WEP or WPA should be avoided as the key can now be cracked within just a few seconds. You should also keep in mind that all devices in your local wireless network, such as smartphones or internet-compatible televisions, must support the encryption standard.

Use a secure WiFi password

Encryption techniques provide an excellent foundation for your security. However, this protection will subsequently be of only limited value if your password can be easily decrypted. A password should never consist of names, birthdays or other terms that can be easily guessed. The password “password123” is particularly popular among many users. When initiating an attack it is also the first password that hackers will try. Consequently, the goal of a password must be to make it as difficult as possible for the attacker to crack. A secure password consists of at least twelve characters and is a random, alphanumeric combination. Always use letters, figures and special characters! If these passwords seem too complicated to you, you can easily commit them to memory with the help of a sentence!

A brief example: Imply use the first letter of each word in a sentence: “When I was young I always wore the number 5 when playing football!”, which produces the following password (without quotation marks): “WIwyIawtn5wpf!” This is exceptionally well suited as it fulfils the criteria regarding minimum length and characters. However, with a WPA2 encryption, the length of your password can be up to 63 characters, which you should make as much use of as possible in order to provide maximum protection for your wireless networks. Alternatively, you could of course also use a free password generator.

Make your WiFi network invisible

If something is well hidden and cannot be seen, it is also difficult to find. This not only sounds logical, but is also simple to execute with regard to local networks. At home, you can simply hide your WiFi by disabling the transfer of the wireless network name (the SSID) of your router. Once you have hidden the name of your wireless network, the availability of your WiFi is no longer displayed in the search results on other devices. If a hacker still wishes to access your WiFi, the only way is to use special spyware programs. That said, a hacker will always first opt for the path of least resistance and will access visible networks first of all. Nonetheless, you should definitely give due consideration to the exact name of your SSID. If, at a later stage, you should wish to establish a connection with a new device, you will have to enter this manually.

Disable DHCP

Disabling the DCHP server in the router also provides increased security in your WiFi. This server enables devices to receive all of the required information, in order that communication with the base station can function without any problems. As soon as you select to disable the service, a connection to the internet is only possible following manual device configuration with the router. As a result, all necessary information must now be entered by hand.

If, for example, you are using the Windows operating system, enter the necessary information into the Control Panel, under Network Connections. After selecting your network card, you can assign a fixed IP address to your computer. However, you should make sure not to select a standard address. As when choosing your password, unusual combinations are preferable, e.g. “192.168.95.12.”. That said, the first two numbers cannot be changed! Admittedly, this method does have a disadvantage: Uncomplicated, flexible logins for guests are a thing of the past as these settings must be configured all over again on each device.

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WiFi security with a MAC filter

The MAC address of your network card functions as an individual identifier for your device. Make use of this advantage to secure your wireless network! Via the router settings, you can activate a MAC filter. This configuration means that only devices with certain MAC addresses can establish a connection with your network. Using special tools it is, however, possible to read MAC addresses. Still, the same principle that applied when hiding your WiFi network applies here also:
Anything that means work and effort for the attacker, and extends the time required for the attack, will benefit your own security – at least a little!

Reduce the range

Increase the security by ensuring that your WiFi is not accessible from outside of your residence. In order to do this, the transmission power must first be reduced via the WiFi router configuration. The second step is to disable the n-standard, which is particularly recommended if the transfer speed is more than sufficient anyway. Changing the position of your router often also offers additional optimisation potential. Do not position your WiFi router near a window or against external walls, but rather position it centrally within your home to achieve an evenly distributed range. Wrapping the antennae with aluminium foil can also create a damping effect and thus reduce the range.

Update the router software

You will no doubt be familiar with this from using Windows or an Android smartphone: You regularly receive updates, which improve the security of your device and close suspected intruder loopholes. This is no different for a router. Here too, thanks to security updates, you have the ability to correct weaknesses that grant hackers access to the system. These firmware updates are not released regularly, but it is still recommended that you search for new software for your home router model two to three times per year, seeing that as of yet very few models perform updates automatically.

Disable WiFi when not in use

A classic to finish – and probably the simplest yet most reliable method of protecting your local network: Simply switch your router off when not in use. You normally do not require WiFi at night or when you are not at home. And so this is a very simple way to foil attackers. For if your wireless network is not switched on, then no-one can access it. With this trick you can secure your network 100%. Make use of our tips to protect your WiFi – SpyOFF takes care of your security and anonymity during all online activity!