The evolution in technology have major benefits to people’s lives. However these benefits are being eroded by the rise in cybersecurity incidences. With the rise and increased adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) in our homes, hackers have found a soft target. The increased cybersecurity incidences in our homes is due to the fact majority of people are amateurs when it comes to internet security. We discuss the various WiFi security threats and how to overcome them.
“Majority of users and home devices uses WiFi for communication, connectivity and functionality. Therefore, securing your WiFi enhances internet security.”
MitM is the most common type of security threat. In this type of an attack, an attacker intercepts data packet travelling between victims. Attackers can eavesdrop a communication between users or devices and use the accessed data for selfish gains. This is mostly caused by lack of mutual authentication protocols between the senders.
Packet analyzers also known as packet sniffers are computer programs that monitor network traffic in particular network. These programs can also intercept data packages and reveal details regarding the packet content. Packet analyzers can also be used to introduce malicious errors to test the network stability.
Sharing Wi-Fi among many users is very risky. The risk is increased if some of the users’ access unsecure websites. Hackers can setup dummy websites that use allows them to gain access to the network. Once a hacker accesses the network, it is easy for them to compromise all the other devices on the network without the user’s knowledge.
Error when Wi-Fi security set-up
One of the main wi-fi network vulnerability is the user. Majority of the users are amateurs when it comes to wi-fi and internet security. As a result, these users make errors when making the initial network configurations leaving backdoors that can be exploited by intruders.
Substandard Wi-Fi security devices
Due to the increased demand in network devices and IoT devices, device manufacturers have been unable to meet the increasing demand. As a result, in order to cater for the large market, these manufacturers have become greedy and manufactured substandard devices. These devices do not adhere to the set network industrial standards and thus making the Wi-Fi network vulnerable to attacks.
How to secure Wi-Fi network
Change default configurations
Every wi-fi network devices like routers come with default configurations. Therefore, is important to change the initial username and password details. This is because, the default configurations are a matter of public record and thus hackers can easily guess these details.
Setup a firewall
The device router has an inbuilt firewall. Therefore it is crucial to activate the router firewall to offer an extra layer of protection. Also, it is important to turn on computer firewalls to thwart malicious software and programs from installation.
Ensure encryption is enabled
Encryption encodes the communication passing through a wireless router. There are two encryption methods provided for wireless routers; WEP (Wireless Equivalent Privacy) and WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Areas). WEP uses algorithms for encryption where as WPA uses encryption keys which change each time a device access the network. WPA is mostly preferred as it is hard to crack due to the use of dynamic encryption keys.
MAC address Filtering
The MAC addresses of the devices that are authorized to connect to the Wi-Fi should be added to the router administrative settings. This helps to ensure that only authorized devices connect to the Wi-Fi.
Enhancing Wi-Fi security is very crucial for any organization or individual. The appropriate mechanisms should be put in place to prevent attackers from accessing the Wi-Fi network. Also, individuals should use strong passwords and avoid sharing passwords to untrusted individuals.