Monday, 23 January 2012

First Steps to Making your Wireless Broadband Internet Secure

We all know just how useful it can be to enjoy the freedom and convenience of wireless broadband internet, but alongside all of the positive aspects of this, there can also be things to watch out for. The main issue with many wireless networks is that they’re often not secure, which means that all and sundry can hop on and tap into your broadband.

Known as piggybacking, this can slow down your high-speed supply and also allow people to download unsuitable content via your account, which is not ideal by anybody's standards. However, while many of us are now finding out how easy it is to prevent this, there are still many people who have not bothered to secure their networks and, considering it can be done quite easily, it seems amazing that this happens.

Get secure

The first and best way to lock down your high-speed broadband account is to ensure that your Wi-Fi network has been encrypted. This is a way of effectively securing it from the outside world and thereby allowing only authorised users to tap into it. All home wireless routers can be setup in this fashion and you’ll find it well documented in the instruction manual, just in case you’ve never bothered to look before now.

Aim to get yourself secured using the standards WPA or WPA2 as these are seen as the best forms of security compared to the less effective WEP method. You’ll need to come up with a really good password for maximum protection when you do this – the steps to doing it should be in the instruction manual or can be found online if you search for the router that you’re using at the present time.

Use the internet to get some tips on choosing a secure password too, rather than going for the same one that you use on all of your other accounts. That’s a really bad habit, but people still tend to do it on a regular basis.

Software options

Remember too that for added protection your router may well have a firewall, but it’s also a good idea to get an additional third-party firewall software option too. This sort of thing is very cheap to buy but can help you add an additional layer of protection to your wireless internet setup and give additional confidence to you if you’re feeling susceptible to external attacks.

There are some free downloads available for this kind of software, but as always you get what you pay for, so it’s also a good idea to investigate the software that you have to pay for as a more complete package. Either way, you’ll certainly be able to feel more confident about how secure your wireless broadband setup is once you’ve gone through and implemented these procedures.

It my take a couple of hours in order to get yourself sorted, but that’s much better than finding some months down the line that your broadband has been used by some unknown, while you have to sit and suffer with a poorly performing connection.