Amidst working from home, secure the “Home WiFi” network

[Posted on Behalf of Archie Jackson,  Senior Director and Head of IT & IS Incedo Inc]

There is a #global new normal during the #COVID19 #pandemic of working from home. Be it any industry, the mode of operation has limited to the boundaries of residences.

Listing down 10 important measures to strengthen the controls of security & privacy for your Home-Office WiFi.

 1.      Default Router Password: Access your home WiFi router settings by typing 192.168.1.1 into your web browser. Enter the username and password for the router. You may find it on the router label. Most of the home WiFi routers are set with default username (admin) and generic passwords. Once logged in, change the default password of the router.

2.      Set a unique SSID: The SSID (or Wireless Network Name) of your Wireless Router is usually pre-defined as “default” or is set as the brand name of the router (e.g. Linksys). Don’t use your name, home address or other personal information in the SSID name.

3.      Enable Network Encryption: Wireless networks come with multiple kinds of encryption such as WEP, WPA or WPA2. Ensure the encryption is enabled on the router to WPA2.

4.      Turn off SSID broadcasting: When using a wireless router at home, it is recommended to disable network name broadcasting to the general public.

5.      Enable MAC Address filtering: All wireless devices have a unique MAC address. Make a list of all your hardware devices that you want to connect to your wireless network, find their MAC addresses, and then add them to the MAC address filtering in your router’s administrative settings. (You can find the MAC address for your computers by opening Command Prompt and typing in “ipconfig /all”, which will show your MAC address beside the name “Physical Address”. You can find the MAC addresses of mobile phones and other portable devices under their network settings)

6.      Disable WPS: Some Wi-Fi routers offer a feature of WPS which provided an easy way to connect devices to a WPA protected wireless network by pushing a button or a PIN code. It is important to disable WPS in the router's settings as it makes it easier for unauthorized devices to gain access.

7.      Firmware Update: Keep router’s firmware up to date by updating it from the router settings page.

8.      Turn off: the router when not in use.

9.      Disable the Remote Access of the router: Access the web interface and search for “Remote access” or “Remote Administration“.

10.  Enable Rouge WiFi access point detection if settings are available

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