Network security at home

Man with laptopWorried that people you don’t know might be connecting to your network? Concerned that the kids are on the internet when they should be asleep? Don’t just sit there worrying – do something about it!

When connectivity was done with cables it was all so easy because, without a wire, nobody could connect to your router making it hard to sneak in and use it un-noticed. Likewise, if you wanted to stop the kids surfing after hours you simply “pulled the plug” at the router end and that was it for the night.

Wi-Fi, however, adds a cloak of invisibility, which means having to get a little bit creative and delve into some of the more advanced router options to keep a lid on network use. But then some of the simplest precautions can be the most effective, for example, ensuring you have set a secure password for your router.

Most D-Link routers let you configure more than one wireless network (called an SSID), each with its own security settings including a password. Furthermore, look for time and date controls to limit when each network can be used and setup – one, tightly-controlled SSID for the kids and another, more relaxed network for the grown-ups.

Most routers also let you manage access using the MAC address fixed into every network device, typically, by blocking connections to unknown addresses. This can take a while to setup, but it isn’t difficult and is a very easy way of preventing neighbours or passers-by using your router to connect to the Internet without your knowledge, even if they manage to crack your password. Another common option is the ability to see a list of devices actively connected to and using your router. Some can even log this information so that you don’t have to sit watching for intruders all the time.

Thanks to the latest D-Link Cloud routers with web-based management and mydlink technology, extras like the ability to monitor and manage your network remotely with a free Smartphone app, make it easy to check who’s on your network and make sure they’re offline when they should be.

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