It is deniable that our works and lives are more convenient and easier when using wireless. We can work anywhere and that is why wireless networks are becoming so popular. Especially if you have broadband Internet access, a wireless router can give you instant communication with the world.
Imagine you are sitting by the pool and enjoying chatting through the Internet. Or lounging in the Jacuzzi listening to your MP3 collection is appealing to us all. Unfortunately, many, or even most, wireless units don’t come with security features already functioning. This may not seem like a big issue to someone who is simply setting up a home network, but there are a number of potential problems you should consider.
Identity theft seems to be the most serious problem. If your network is unsecured, the personal data on your wireless electronic equipment is also unsecured. The order you just placed for a book at Amazon may have given your contact and payment information to an unscrupulous hacker! Nearly every town in which “WiFi” is common will have “War Drivers” and “War Chalkers” at work. These are people who walk or drive around town with wireless equipment, searching for unsecured networks. The “Chalkers” then live up their name, marking curbs and other public items with chalk so that others can more easily find and exploit your network.
In fact, not all “War Drivers” are hackers, of course. Many just want to use your network for free, but the risk is high if you don’t learn how to protect yourself. You can usually find quite a bit of free information as to how to secure your network at the website of your router’s manufacturer, or by doing a search in a search engine for a phrase like “secure home wireless.”
In addition, there are also your neighbors who may find your network by accident and enjoy nosing into your activities and using your Internet access at will, slowing down your network speed in the process.
Even many businesses use cheap, home-use quality equipment for their company networks. With the poor security often found on small business networks, anyone with a basic knowledge of wireless can access sensitive company and customer data.
It is highly recommended that you hire service companies to secure your network for you, or else you will have to bear with a risk of being exploited. A search of your local yellow pages or an inquiry at your neighborhood computer store should yield professional help and get your private data private again.