Securing Your Home Network Smart Home
Smart Home Networking. Everything is “smart” nowadays. You probably have smart speakers, some sort of smart assistant (Alexa, Google) and you may even have smart lights or other appliances in your home. What do all these appliances have in common?
They’re linked to your home wifi network and if someone can hack into that, they can access all your devices – including any smart door locks you may have too – which would give them access to your home.
But even if you haven’t bought into smart devices, you still need to be smart about your home networking. If you have internet in your home, then you need to be doing the things below to keep it safe – or else everything from your social security number to your kid’s pictures can easily end up in a stranger’s hands.
The Basics of a Smart Home
You have a router (which plugs into the wall and brings you internet) and that router has a network with a given name and password. When you buy the router, it has a very long numerical name and a password that is a string of letters and numbers that’s impossible to remember.
So, when you got the router, you likely changed the password to something you can remember, like your dog’s name and the year you got them, or something along those lines. You set the password once and haven’t changed it since then.
Right? Well, that’s a problem. How many guests have you given your password to over the years? If you have kids, they’ve given their friends the wifi password too – so count them into the total count as well. That means there are at least ten phones out there that will automatically connect to your wifi when they get within range.
All it takes is one stolen/lost phone and a person with some technology skills to hack into your home network.
Wifi-Password Rules to Live By
First, you need to know how to set a good password. A strong password has letters, numbers, and symbols. It should make as little sense as possible, so no well-known phrases or things that are easy to guess (like kids or pets names).
For example, OR@ngeDoor15ten. If you’re not feeling creative, then you can find random password generators online (but be sure to add one or two original details).
You should change your wifi password every six months at the very least, but every three to four months is best.
If you know that you won’t change your wifi password more than every six months, then you can create a guest network.
How to Create a Guest Network
Newer routers, like past 2018 or so, offer the ability to set up a guest network, which is a sub-network to your main one. That way you can give your guests internet access, but not access to your network that you store everything on.
You can do this from your home router page, where you set up your network originally.
Kick Devices Off
Whenever you remember to change the password, you can see which devices are connected to your network on the router page as well.
You’d be surprised how many things are attached to your network and, as an added bonus to the security, taking devices you’re not using off your network will make your internet faster! Who doesn’t love that?
Pick and Choose Your Smart Devices Carefully
When you’re thinking about buying a new smart device, whether it’s a door lock or an app-controlled light-bulb, make sure you look into the security of the controlling app.
Your network can be the strongest thing in the world, but if someone can hack into the app of something that’s connected to your wifi, then it doesn’t matter how often you change your password.
This is one reason why it’s smarter to buy brand-name smart devices – the extra few dollars are worth the added security that comes with a trusted company-run app
Use a Home Networking Provider You Trust
A lot of the time people don’t realize how many internet providers they have access to. They’ll just continue the same service they had at their last place, or copy what their neighbor has.
But having a network provider that makes security a priority can do more than any of the tips on this page. A good provider protects you at the server level, which strengthens the steps you take at home.
Plus, they can help you set up your network, decide what speeds you need, answer your troubleshooting questions, and provide better pricing than the big-name competitors out there.
Read their reviews just like you would any other company you’re investing your money in, but don’t write off custom coverage providers. They can do more for you than you’d think!
Setting Up the Perfect Home Network
At Babcock network solutions we’re passionate about security first, but helping our customers get exactly what they need is a close second. We’ll go out of our way to make sure you have the perfect home networking set up, every time.
We’d like to prove that claim. Contact us today!