A router is a device that can be employed to allow a specific number of users to share a single Internet connection. Routers are incredibly useful at number of locations such as homes, offices and universities. These past five years have witnessed an unprecedented increase in the number of portable devices for browsing the Web. Consequently, public places such as coffee shops have also started to provide wireless hotspot services.
Wireless routers share an Internet connection by sending out radio waves whereas Ethernet port based routers require devices to be connected to it through LAN cables. The biggest advantage of wireless routing is ?zero? cabling. One of the most important factors to consider when purchasing a wireless router is that of security features.
Wireless Internet Security Features
When setting up a wireless network at home, it is important to understand the need for security. A wireless network spans across a certain range allowing any number of devices to connect to it. Therefore, a user can easily connect to a router being used in a neighbouring house. There are a number of ways to prevent this from happening.
Setting up a Pass key
Setting up a security key on a wireless network prevents unauthorized access. Only those individuals who have the key can connect to the network.
There are three types of security keys that come with every wireless router. These include WEP (Wired Equivalency Protocol) which is the most common type of security key. The other two are WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) and WPA-2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access 2).
A WEP protocol on a router results in a weak security key as compared to the other two protocols. The reason behind the weaker security key is due to WEP?s support for lower encryption formats.
Broadcasting your SSID
SSID (Service Set Identifier) Broadcasting is present in every router. When a network is setup, the name is set to default by the router itself unless it is changed. The default network name is based on the manufacturer and model of the router. Most users do not bother to modify the SSID. A default SSID name can be used to breach the wireless network by experienced hackers. Most routers also provide the option of turning off SSID broadcasting completely. This prevents public visibility of the wireless network.
MAC filtering allows a router to identify devices via their MAC IDs. Every device has a MAC ID which is unique to it. Routers have the ability to clone and save MAC addresses.
MAC filtering provides the added security benefit of preventing unauthorized users from accessing the network even when they have the password security key. Mac Filtering is offered by both advanced and low cost wireless routers. It is a very efficient way of implementing Wireless Internet Security.
Preventing Wireless access to user interface
The most important rule of wireless Internet security is preventing wirelessly connected users from accessing the setup interface of the router. Once an unauthorized user gains access to the setup interface, he or she can wreak all sorts of havoc within a network. Wireless Routers provide a feature which allows only those users that are connected via LAN cables (Ethernet Ports) to the router to access the setup interface.
This can be accomplished by only allowing users to access it if their device is connected via LAN to the router.
Considering all the pitfalls of browsing the net today, you need to have internet security tools that help maintain your safety. An example of these tools is secure online storage. Make sure to stop by to get reviews and tips that help you navigate the internet minefield.