Wi-Fi networking is absolutely essential to the modern home. From smartphones to games consoles to intelligent thermostats like Nest, virtually every appliance now requires a wireless internet connection.

Wi-Fi-network

As a result, there is all kinds of valuable information being transmitted across your Wi-Fi network – credit card numbers, passwords and sensitive photos and files. Which makes your network a natural target for cyber criminals.

Introducing drive-by hacking

Because you can’t see wireless network signals, you cannot easily tell how far they reach. It is not unusual for your network to extend into the street outside your house – which provides an opportunity for hackers to get connected.

Using basic cracking tools, it is possible to bypass Wi-Fi network security in as little as 10 minutes. It may be that these hackers simply want to use your internet connection to get online – not as serious as stealing your sensitive personal information, but still stealing nonetheless.

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So how do you know if your Wi-Fi network has been hacked?

The first sign that your Wi-Fi network has been compromised will probably be a general decrease in internet speeds. The more people connected to your network, the more problems you will have loading webpages or streaming videos.

If you notice anything strange happening on your network, you must investigate. The first thing to check will be the Wi-Fi router itself.

The connected devices list

Log into your router using the username and password supplied when it was installed (they are often printed on a sticker on the rear of the unit). The specifics for each router are different, but you are looking for the Wi-Fi status page which lists all the devices that have connected, or are connected, to your network.

These details may be under a section called Attached DevicesDevice List or Home Network for instance.

Have a look through the listing, looking for any devices that are unfamiliar. Any devices you don’t recognise indicate a hacker may have compromised your network security.

It is possible that some of the devices have “unfriendly” names that aren’t immediately recognisable, but which are completely legitimate. Make sure you check all of your Wi-Fi-attached devices before panicking!

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Keeping Wi-Fi hackers out

There are a number of advanced techniques for improving your Wi-Fi network security, like locking down network access to pre-approved devices based on the unique MAC identifier. Far simpler, and almost as effective, is to simply choose a more robust security protocol.

Just remember that if you do change the security protocol setting, you may have to reconnect all of your Wi-Fi devices – but that’s a small price to pay to prevent people cracking their way onto the network.

You should also add a second layer of security to deal with the eventuality that a hacker still manages to break in. A comprehensive security application installed on your PCs and Android phones will help prevent your personal data being stolen. This has the added benefit of blocking viruses and to protect younger members of your family from questionable web content.

Wi-Fi security is constantly evolving

you need to stay aware of what is happening on your network to keep the bad guys out. These tips will help you tell if something is wrong and help to formulate an effective response.

Security is one of the primary concerns of internet users today. Hacking and data theft are among the worst fears of everyday people who work and play online. In addition to concerns over these threats, internet users are often plagued by too many targeted advertisements, restrictions, and bad connections.

VPN

Virtual private networks, or VPNs, offer a solution to many of these problems and are used by people all over the world. VPNs encrypt your web traffic, making it invisible to anyone besides you and your VPN provider. This keeps your searches private and prevents websites from collecting your location or data. It also allows you to access content from anywhere in the world.

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VPN Uses

VPNs or virtual proxy networks have grown in popularity among individuals and also businesses in the last few years. There are numerous reasons why and we’re going to look at three of them in the piece of content below.

Security

As mentioned above, VPNs can increase your security while using the internet. This is especially useful if you use hotspots or Wi-Fi in cafés, hotels, and airports. It prevents people from accessing your information such as passwords, conversations, and browsing history. It also secures any internet phone calls you may make over Skype, WhatsApp, or Google Hangouts, for example. It also keeps websites from tracking your activities and offering suggested content based on what you do online. This can eliminate small annoyances and even alter the price of certain items such as airfare and hotels.

Unblocking Geo Restricted Content

If you get Netflix Australia but want to unlock the content provided to subscribers in the U.S., a VPN can help you access the shows and movies you want. You may want to check these good privacy providers in Australia for more details.  This also works for Hulu, HBO, Pandora, online games, and other services that are restricted to certain countries or continents. If this is your main reason for wanting a VPN, make sure your VPN provider has servers in the country of the content you are trying to access. Otherwise, it won’t work.

File Sharing

Illegal downloading is not encouraged, but people who do it like to use VPNs to remain anonymous and avoid any legal repercussions. P2P or peer to peer file sharing is one way for people to get access to the books, films, and games they’re looking for without going to the main vendors and buying them directly. Using torrents to download content can result in fines and it is strictly prohibited in many countries. VPNs are a good tool to use to prevent detection and penalties.

Bypassing Network Restrictions

Workplaces, schools, and many other institutions and facilities prohibit access to certain websites while using their networks. This may be for security purposes and also to keep employees and students focused on more appropriate tasks. They may prohibit websites such as YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook, for example, along with any others that are deemed irrelevant to the institution’s needs.

With a VPN, however, students and employees can easily access the blocked websites. If your heads of administration are watchful they may be able to detect that you’re using a VPN, but they won’t know what you’re using it for. This may get you in trouble, so keep in mind the potential risks as you weigh the importance of bypassing these network restrictions.

Blocking Government Surveillance

Just as VPNs are used to bypass work or school network restrictions, they can also be used to prevent government surveillance. This can be useful if the idea of someone spying on you and tracking your activity makes you uneasy. However, it’s not a good idea to use VPNs if using them is a punishable offense in your country. Your activity won’t be revealed to government security agencies, but the fact that you’re using a VPN will not be hidden. This can result in serious consequences, and it’s important that you do some deliberation and legal research before deciding to use a VPN for this purpose.

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Keeping You Safe

VPNs are useful to have even if you’re not a gamer or someone who wants to bypass network or security restrictions. The best thing a premium VPN can offer is better protection and safer internet access. Most people use Wi-Fi and hotspots more than they realize, and keeping activity hidden from potential predators makes having a VPN worth it. Your VPN provider may also offer additional protection for a low fee, making your online security investments go even further.

Purchasing VPN Service from a Provider

Each provider will offer different services at different prices. Some VPN services cost as low as 5 USD per month and others are as high as over 30 USD per month. Whatever you can afford to pay for a VPN, make sure it’s capable of delivering the services you need.