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Routers are one of the most important parts of modern homes, but not many people realize that they are also computers, with their own operating system, software, and problems.
What problems? Security, for example. Do you know that many people, once a wireless router has been installed, put it somewhere and forget to properly secure it?
Why Should You Lock A Wireless Router?
An unsecured wireless router offers unwanted users to access your internet connection and steal your raw speed (bandwidth). If you want to prevent other people to do that, you have to lock your wireless router.
How To Lock Down Your Wireless Router
There are a few steps you have to make to lock down your home router so anyone can’t access your home network without your permission.
Access Your Router Interface: Firstly, you have to open your web browser and navigate to your router’s address. Every manufacturer has a different address for their routers, but the most common are “http://192.168.0.1“, “http://192.168.1.1” and “http://192.168.2.1“.
If any of these works for you, consult your router´s manual or check out our article – A List of Common Default Router IP Addresses
Enter the username (admin) and password (admin) and then click “OK” or “Log In“. You should find these credentials on the bottom of your router. Common usernames include variations of admin, administrator, and the password is often admin, password, or simply left blank.
Click on the “Settings“, “Security“, or “Wireless Settings” tab. It varies between router manufacturers.
Change The Network Name: Changing the default name of the Wi-Fi makes it harder for other users to know what type of router you have. Find the “Wireless Network Name” (also called SSID) and write the new name of your Wi-Fi in the box.
Set A Strong Password: Click on the “Wireless Security Settings“, and write a strong password in the “Wireless Password” box. Make sure you set a strong and unique password to secure your wireless network.
Secure Your Wireless Router With WPA2: Find your router’s security options on the page and change the “Unsecured” option to “WPA,” “WPA2” or “WEP.” You should be using WPA2, as it’s a standard security system now, so all wireless networks are compatible with it.
Always apply your new setting by clicking “Save“, “Apply” or “OK” on the page.
Change The Default Router Password: For additional security, you should always change the administrative credentials from the default username and password. They’re the first things an attacker will try. Some routers include these credentials on the bottom.
Locate the “Security” setting page or “System Tools” and change the administrator credentials.
Verify That The Network Is Secure
Click on the “Start“. Select “Settings” from the menu and click on “Network and Sharing Center.”
Left-click on your connection link located on the right side of the window.
Click the “Wireless Properties” from the pop-up menu.
Click on the “Security” tab in the “Wireless Properties“
Now, you will see which encryption are you using – WPA2
If you’re looking for a router that will give you great performance and doesn’t cost $300, we are including some awesome and non-expensive options below.
The TP-Link Archer C2300 is a fantastic router with focus on both speed and security. A great addition to your home network. And the high-end features are a reason why you should get this router. The HomeCare, QoS to prioritize your devices and MU-MIMO for better connection sharing and a basic antivirus to keep everything in your home Wi-Fi network safe.
The Linksys AC2200 Max-Stream is a great tri-band router loaded with tools to tweak and customize your router for optimal performance. The router even features MU-MIMO technology, so your whole family can stream, game, and perform other high-bandwidth tasks at the same time and same speed.
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Main photo by Jay Wennington
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