For over 25 years, Greater Cincinnati Computer has offered honest, knowledgeable computer services to Cincinnati area residents. Their wide range of computer services includes website design and hosting, PC and laptop repair, as well as computer sales and network design services.
As technology experts, the staff at Greater Cincinnati Computer knows how vital wireless internet can be. But although Wi-Fi is streamlined and convenient, it can also make you vulnerable to Wi-Fi “piggybacking.” This occurs when people who are trying to avoid paying for their own internet service access your personal network and use it for themselves, often in the apartment next door or in a parked car near your home. Aside from a potential increase to your bill and reduced internet speed due to multiple users, Wi-Fi piggybacking can sometimes allow strangers to access your personal files.
In order to avoid this intrusion, take advantage of these three helpful tips from Greater Cincinnati Computer on keeping your Wi-Fi secure:
- Create a Secure Password: When safeguarding your personal information, your password is the moat to your online castle. Never include personal information like birthdays or phone numbers, as these can easily be discovered by those who know your address or overhear your conversations. When it comes to letters, pick random ones that can't be read as words with dictionary definitions. Choose letters that work as acronyms for a phrase unique to your life, so that they appear as a random jumble of characters. Don’t forget to include numbers and symbols alongside letters, as these will make your password even stronger.
- Reduce Your Range: The wider the range of your network—the geographic area it takes up—the more strangers will attempt to piggyback on it. If your Wi-Fi is still available 100 feet outside of your house, neighbors and drivers nearby can use your Internet from an inconspicuous distance. You can lower the signal range from your router by changing its mode, putting it in your basement, or wrapping the antennae in tin foil.
- Filter MAC Addresses: Since most piggybackers use mobile devices—laptops, tablets or phones that they've brought into your Wi-Fi range—it's important to consider distinguishing between your devices and those of a stranger. This is possible by identifying the individual MAC addresses that act as identification numbers for your personal devices, and programming your router's administrative settings to block those that are foreign. This way, each device has its own personal password to access your network.
Once you’re surfing the web securely and confidently, visit Greater Cincinnati Computer's website to browse their computer services, or call them at (513) 985-1300 for more tips on how to improve your technology and your lifestyle.