A few advices how to protect your router.

All of security settings do not require intervention of a professional, but if you don’t want to share you traffic with “progressive” neighbors, you need to protect your router. Dialogue like “-knock-knock -who’s there? –It’s Hacker. – Wait a second. I would open.” may happens in your life. And even if you don’t mind, will you pass them to load your network bandwidth. If I convinced you, let’s begin.

wifiRouter is central communication hub of your network. According to statistics, unprotected routers can be hacked for 50 seconds. Manufacturers try to make routers more protected by releasing new firmware for their devices. So you should update your firmware to be more protected. It needs to connect to router by using normal network cable (included) and web browser interface. To do this, enter IP address of the router (192.168.l.l as usual) in address bar. If you can’t get in router’s web interface by using 192.168.1.1, you can check back side or bottom cover of device. Usually, 192.168.1.1 is used by Zyxel, Asus, ZTE and NetGear. There is one more method to know your router’s IP address: “Start” — “Run” — “command “cmd”. You should type “ipconfig” in command and press Enter button. In “default gateway” line you will see your IP address.

Login and password are usually the same – “admin”. There are cases when password bar is empty or “1234”. Usually password is typed on back side of device. It’s necessary to change it. In Maintenace section you can found “Set password” (for Netgear’s routers).

Before firmware changing, save a backup of old version. You need to find “Backup settings” in Maintenace paragraph. To restore firmware you can just specify path to resulted file. Better if you will save it on your hard disk memory. You can update firmware by clicking “Firmware Update”. If you’ve downloaded a firmware file, you should specify the path to it.

After you’ve reset router and changed password, let’s protect your wireless network. There are three methods of encryption: WEP( the most unreliable), WPA-PSK and WPA2-PSK with AES. You need to select “Wireless settings” in setup menu. Then type your network’s name in Name(SSID). It will be displayed in list of available devices in wireless network. Select checkbox WPA-PSK (TKIP)+ WPA2-PSK(AES) in Security options. In Passphrase paragraph you need to enter encryption key and network password (imagine it) which you will use to connect to network.

Reliable protection also provides a unique MAC address of network adapter. You can use filtering by known addresses. You can know your router’s web interface IP address by checking your router’s backside or bottom cover or by using second method. You will see it in “Physical address” parameter. If you want to enable filtering, open “Wireless Settings” in “Advanced” and click “Setup Access List”. Then select “Turn Access Control On”. You should to note displayed devices which you need. In routers of other manufacturers you can find similar settings in “Setting/Advanced Setting”.

Wish you good protection!

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