How many times have we heard the story of people complaining about the speed of their Internet connection. Numerous times innocent Internet users have been accused of sending hate emails when in reality, personal email accounts where hacked though their home based unsecured WI-Fi network. The tool of choice is a free packet sniffing tool that can scan traffic flowing though a wireless network. Most modem manufacturers use the default IP address 192.168.1.1.
To protect against this type of intrusion, there are some simple steps that you can take to avoid any embarrassment. First open your router settings by connecting your computer to the router with a cable and typing the administrator address, typically 192.168.1.1. When logged in, you will have access to several settings which will have to be altered.
Now, create a unique password for accessing your router. This will prevent anyone from accessing your router. Next enable network encryption to a setting like WPA – Personal (Wireless Protected Access). You will be required to enter and save another password. This should be a mixture of uppercase, lowercase and special characters.
You must now enable MAC (Media Access Control) address filtering. Each computer in the whole world has a unique MAC address. Open a command prompt window and type “ipconfig all”. This will present a MAC address listing to all your external access media interfaces including the one that is connected to your router. Write this down and enter it into the MAC filtering page on your router. Also change your default access IP from 192.168.1.1 to another address. Enable and save.
Lastly, reduce the signal strength of your router so that the range is limited to your own house. This will make your routers signal unavailable to the outside world. Try and log into the original IP of 192.168.1.1. If you cannot then you have succeeded.