Hacking has become an issue that everyone has to be wary of when using the internet. So much of our identity is tied to online profiles, passwords, and servers, so a hacking attack can be a devastating assault on our privacy.
Hacking can be as simple as being tricked into giving out a password or as complex as a sophisticated virus that invades your server. Your wireless router can be one of your first lines of defense against hacking attempts, so learning how to make your router hack-proof is more important than ever.
In this overview, we will be going over some things you should be aware of and how you can address them to keep your and your information safe.
- Anyone is potentially vulnerable to hacking, no matter how much protection we have. However, the more you protect yourself, the less you will be susceptible to it.
- When you’re hacked, you can have money, information, or precious data stolen or used to extort you.
- Being unable to log into your network, strange changes to your passwords, and malicious websites popping up can all be signs of a hacked router.
- There are 10 simple steps you can take today that will help to make your router more secure against hacking.
- Your router will never be impossible to hack, but you can make it close to impossible with the right steps.
- Links and resources for software that can help you to secure your router.
Can Someone Hack Your Wifi Router
It’s not a nice thought, but it’s an unfortunate fact that anyone can be open to an attack from malicious software or individuals. Some hacking methods are more devious than others, but all of them are an invasion of privacy that can befall anyone.
Some hacking methods rely on catching you off guard, while some use sophisticated software and techniques to trick you. Sometimes, this software can use old-fashioned brute force to invade your systems and networks. This is true whether you’re a massive company or someone who uses the internet exclusively for Facebook.
This article on how hackers can access your investment profile is just one example of how hacking can impact you or your business.
What Happens If Your Router Is Hacked?
There are so many potential ramifications that can result from hacking that it would be an endless list to name them all. Essentially, most hacking is done to achieve a mostly similar goal. It’s usually about gaining access, whether that’s to a password, banking details, or access to sensitive information.
We have passwords, encryption, and software to protect all of these, and hacking is meant to bypass all of these protections. If so, you can lose your money, information, safety, and more.
Routers have been made more secure against hacking in recent years, but it’s never totally foolproof. If your router is hacked, your information will be vulnerable to whoever instigated it, making it essential to prevent it.
Education is key to the fight against hacking and cyber attacks, so we have a comprehensive list of the best books on cybersecurity for you to check out and learn from.
How Can You Tell If Your Router Has Been Hacked?
The answer to this question is another one that is not a quick one to answer. There are some common telltale signs you can look out for, however. For instance, you may find that you suddenly can’t access your network.
You may find that your passwords suddenly don’t work, for instance. If this happens out of the blue, you may have had your passwords changed by a hacker or malicious software. You may also find yourself directed to strange websites no matter what you type into your search bar.
Or, it could be as simple as your computer becoming much slower out of nowhere. These are all very general signs, but you can generally tell just by sensing something is different about the computer or network or that your access has been compromised.
How To Hack Proof Your Router In 10 Steps
All of these points we have discussed can seem a bit scary or disheartening. You may be wondering what you can do to protect yourself from this onslaught of attacks. It can feel like you need to be a computer expert to protect yourself, but there are simple steps you can take to protect yourself, and we will list 10 of them now.
1: Update Your Firmware Frequently
If you use electronic devices connected to the internet, you will usually get notifications for firmware updates that are available. They are usually quite small and easy to ignore, but you should always take the opportunity to update them.
Firmware updates will bring your device up to speed and implement the latest security features and other performance enhancements that will make your device or network much more secure.
To summarize, never ignore a firmware update no matter how small it may be!
2: Enable WPA3 or 2 Wireless Encryption
Encryption is used to convert your data to a code that should be next to impossible for other people to guess or use. The more complex the encryption, the better! WPA2 encryption ensures that your data is harder to access to anyone out of your network, and the WPA3 variant is a more advanced form of it.
Enabling this encryption is usually simple, but it can vary on your device, router, or network. We recommend looking up the procedure depending on these factors, as well as which variant is better for your setup.
This simple setup will make your network much harder to invade!
3:Turn On Your Routers Firewall Feature
Most routers will have some kind of firewall feature that is often optional. A firewall creates a line of defense for your network, as it will look at all incoming and outgoing data to detect and block breaches.
Not only should you always pick a router with firewall features, but they should be enabled whenever possible.
4: Hide Your Network Name From The Public
Having your network name viewable to the public gives hackers a leg up in making it easier for them to hack into your system. That’s why you should always access your network settings to hide it from unauthorized people so that it will be even harder to breach.
5: Use A Personal VPN Service At The Router Level
VPNs, or Virtual Private Networks, have become more accessible and affordable to everyday people than ever. A VPN will make your connection more private and secure by providing encryption that hides or changes your location.
This is a basic breakdown of what they do, but they have become a great resource for people who want greater protection and anonymity online. Some routers come with VPN compatibility right off the bat, but you should consider using one even if this is not the case.
If you’re new to VPNs, we have this handy article on how to get started that you can check out.
6: Enable MAC Filtering/Assign Static IP Addresses
It’s always best to have control over who can and cannot access your network, and that brings us to MAC filtering. This is a router feature where you can block certain networks or devices from accessing your network.
Assigning static IP addresses will make it so your network doesn’t change, which can be ideal for businesses or anyone who has a network that will be remotely accessed. Which one you go for will depend on your situation, and you can look up what would be best for your router or network.
Either one can be a great way to make your network more secure, however.
7: Use A Guest Network
Creating and using a guest network can be very helpful for certain use cases. A guest network on your router will be a network that is a bit more limited and restricted than what regular users will have access to.
This would be recommended for anyone granting access to strangers. This could include customers at a store or restaurant or maybe a login address for AirBnb tenants.
You don’t want strangers to have access to your main network, so this is a great way to provide access without compromising yourself.
8: Disable Remote Administration
On paper, remote administration sounds like a convenient feature. For some people, it can be, as it allows you to have more control over your network admin. It can also open up your network to interference, however, as it essentially creates a new point of entry for hackers to exploit.
If you have the option, you should always disable it if you don’t need that kind of remote access.
9: Periodically Change Your Passwords
Picking a good password is one of the best ways to make it harder to be hacked. In general, it is recommended to choose a password that isn’t easily guessed and has a mix of numbers, punctuation, and capital letters.
Choosing a great password isn’t enough, however. Many security experts recommend changing passwords fairly regularly, and they also advise not using the same password for many different services or networks.
10: Buy A Secure Router With These Features
Many of the items on this list are fairly simple, but some can be a bit more complex and intimidating, even if it’s on a surface level. Luckily, you can find many routers that have these and more features already built in, so that eliminates a lot of the guesswork.
You won’t have to look far to get started, as we already have an article on some of the best secure routers you can get on the market. It’s aimed more at small businesses, but there are plenty of options for just about anyone to get you started.
Will Your Router Be Impossible To Hack?
We have seen some great ways to learn how to hack-proof your router, but will it protect you 100% of the time? Unfortunately, it’s not possible to be completely impervious to hacking, as sometimes it can rely on human error or trickery.
While not impossible, using any of these methods will increase your protection dramatically and make it much harder for hackers to exploit you.
Final Thoughts- How To Hack Proof Your Router
We hope that this list has given you enough to get started in making your network and devices much safer! Some of these items would not be feasible for some situations, but you can easily judge which ones would be more applicable to you and your network.
Hacking is an awful violation, and we hope that you can join in the fight against hacking by using some of these easy methods!
Where To Buy A Secure Router And VPN
If you’re looking to buy yourself a secure router, we would again refer you to our article on the best secure routers. We also have a similar list of the best VPNs for iPhones. While specialized for iPhones, this list would be a great place to start for VPN choices in general no matter the network or device you use.
Our main website also has many more articles on the best security products, programs, and practices focused on many different fields for you to check out!