It has always been difficult to keep hackers from obtaining access to a thing as ethereal as electronic signals. Hence, it has always been hard to secure wireless networks. If your wireless network is insufficiently secured or not secured at all, you are at a greater risk of losing crucial data to hackers.
There is no need to go into what kind of damage hackers can cause with your business information because you are aware. You do not need to be a systems expert to defend your network better against malicious individuals. Here is what you can do:
1. Install a secure wireless router
A router is a device that connects the computers on your network to the web. Keep in mind that not all routers are the same. At the very least, your router should support the least decipherable encryption, hide its identity from inquisitive and unauthorized parties outside the network, and stop anyone from accessing the network from an authorized PC. When it comes to routers, remember you get what you pay for, so if you want quality, you should not be afraid to spend.
2. Pick a secure router name
You can achieve this using the configuration software of the manufacturer. The name of the router will be visible as a hotspot or broadcast point to you and anyone else trying to access a wireless network in broadcast area of the router. Do not name your router after its brand name since potential hackers might look up potential flaws of that specific router and use the information to hack it.
Avoid naming the router after your name, address, favorite team, pet or business to keep hackers from guessing your password. The name of the router should not reveal yours or its identity in any way. Use a combination of numbers and letters to name it.
3. Conceal your router name
Once you have a secure name, you should consider hiding your router's name broadcast, also called its service set identifier SSID. You can do this by not selecting the broadcast SSID box. When you do this, your router will be invisible in the broadcast list of routers within your area hence hiding your wireless network to hackers and neighbors. The router will still broadcast but hackers will need very complex and expensive equipment find out if you have a wireless network. This step is crucial if you have highly sensitive information.
4. Pick a strong secure encryption mode
In basic terms, an encryption system uses a string of characters known as a key to decrypt and encrypt data. Hackers have to determine the contents of a network's key to decrypt packets being broadcast in it. The longer the key is, the stronger the encryption.
Wireless Equivalent Privacy (WEP) was the first encryption experts developed for securing wireless networks but it only has a key of 128 bits long, which never changes. The more recent Wireless Fidelity Protected Access 2 (WPA2) has a 256-bit key, which constantly changes, and is now the strongest encryption you can get.