Without the proper precautions, a wifi network could be an open door to your private information. When you’re looking at a list of available networks, it’s tempting to pick one without a lock icon next to it. If there’s no password, you’ll connect quickly and easily and you won’t give it a second thought once you click “resume episode” on Netflix.
As a business, you could be providing public wifi. You want your customers to have a hassle-free experience so you don’t require a password to connect.
That convenience may cost you.
Leaving your wifi network to allow unauthenticated connections makes it so anyone nearby, even 100 yards away, can access your network. Remember, this is probably the same network that your financial data lives on.
Even a slightly technical wifi guest could do some basic snooping and expose your vulnerabilities. As someone connected to an “open” wifi network, you also expose your devices to malicious attacks.
How to Verify a Secure Wifi Network
While you’re traveling, take these precautions before joining a new wifi network:
Ask an Employee
A hacker might name their network after a cafe you’re working in. So before you connect, ask an employee if they do in fact provide wifi to customers.
Double Check the Network’s Name
The difference between a secure network and a dangerous one could be one single character. Take the time to carefully read the name of the network.
Randomize Your MAC Address
Your smartphone may have a random MAC address setting. It’s often a default setting because it provides a layer of protection against a harmful connection.
Provide a Secure Wifi Network in Your Business
Free wifi has become an expectation in commercial spaces. This is how you can protect your network while keeping your patrons and employees content.
Create a Guest Wifi Network
A guest network is separate from your business’s primary, internal network. It’s usually created using a virtual local area network (VLAN) which isolates it from the main network where your private data is. It sounds complex but it only takes a few clicks to set up in your router settings.
You’ll be able to set the password and control who can access your guest network. You can even control when they can connect, and how long they can use it. This prevents neighbors or near-by users who aren’t customers from using your network.
Update Your Router and Wifi Hardware
Your wifi router may be too old to support the security measures you need to take. If your router is using the WEP wifi security protocol, you should upgrade immediately. The minimum we recommend is WPA2 wifi. That said, we’re aware that some of your equipment requires a lower security standard to operate. In that case, it’s important to schedule a consultation with our IT technicians. Email [email protected] and we’ll evaluate your wifi needs.