WiFi is a Peer to Peer (P2P) file sharing service just like Bluetooth. Anyone can get into your connection if your WiFi is not secure. Before securing your WiFi, it’s important to check how secure it really is. Right click on the small wireless network icon on your Task Bar. Select “View Available Wireless Networks” from the available menu. There are usually two types of networks: Security-enabled wireless network and unsecured wireless network. The former needs a security key (a password most times) to access. An unsecured wireless network can be logged into without a password. An insecure network is roughly equal to an insecure WiFi router, so take the following steps to secure your WiFi network.
The Router/Access point is the main config unit. Whoever infiltrates this, can change security settings like passwords, encryptions and more. Most routers have default passwords and SSID (Service Set Identification), so make sure to change the passwords to make the entire system secure. The SSID identifies your router. Most companies use default ones which come with the router like Linksys, wireless or WLAN or they their company name. Choose a more secure password, like a random combination of letters and numbers. The most important part is to disable SSID broadcasting which transmits the SSID to everyone in range. It is recommended that the encryption keys and the SSID are changed very frequently. Remote management is used to access/modify the configuration of Router/Access point from any client machines using login ID and password. It’s recommended this is disabled. For any configuration, have one connect physically to a machine via a network cable. If your WiFi offers WPA2 encryption, then use it (if the router does not support it, you can choose WPA or WEP). Then make sure a password is assigned which is more or less invulnerable to dictionary attacks and choose the highest available encryption option (232->104->40).
Most of us use WiFi at home or in the office. It is recommended to lower the transmit level and reduce the area of the WLAN covers. This will help in providing WiFi signals to a specified area and lower the risk of intrusions. Ad-Hoc mode allows for direct communication of all devices connected to the wireless LAN through the access point/router. Disable Ad-Hoc when available. Also turn off Broadcast ping on the access point/router. This will make your router invisible to 802.11b analysis tools. Most WiFi is kept on for 24 hours. It’s recommended to switch off the WiFi router when not in use.