How to secure your home network in 5 steps

Securing your home network is not just needed to protect your remote working environment, but to also reduce the risk of cyber threats to other members of your household.

Follow these 5 free and quick tips to improve the layered security in your home networking setup:

Change passwords to something unique and strong

You should change passwords on your Windows machines, printers and home router admin password to something unique and strong. This includes the Wi-Fi password, which is often not very complex and hard to remember.

To access your router, in a browser type one of the following addresses:

  • 192.168.0.1
  • 192.168.1.1
  • 192.168.0.254
  • 192.168.1.254

The access password for your device can be found here.

Use this site, click here, to check if your password is secure, aim for millions of years! We recommend 2 or 3 title case dictionary words, followed by 3 numbers and a special character. Easy to remember and secure. E.g. BananaBookTriangle396$ = 252 SEXTILLION YEARS before it can be hacked.

Make sure your home networking devices are up to date

In Windows search for Update and Check for Updates. On a Mac, you may need to check if your device is supported by the latest operating system before upgrading, check here if it is supported

Check the manufacturer’s website for the model number of your printer, and router, then upgrade to the very latest version. If the latest version is years and years old, consider whether that device really needs to be on your network, devices that aren’t up to date pose a big security risk.

See our the blog on IoT devices, here

Install a reputable anti-virus and anti-malware package

We recommend BitDefender or MalwareBytes, then set up a weekly Full Scan. This is often missed, especially on Mac devices which are less resilient to malware than Windows machines at present.

Change your default DNS server from your ISP to something more secure

You could use OpenDNS (208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220), Cloud Flare (1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1) or Quad9 (9.9.9.9). This is a bit more complex but has a huge impact on cyber security.

Here is a great guide from Windows Central on how to complete the process.

Consider creating a separate “Guest” networks

If you have any devices that you cannot update to the latest version, or that you do not need to be able to communicate with from other devices, it is best to create a separate network for them. Most aftermarket routers have the option to create an “isolated” Wi-Fi connection.

For a great guide from our friend at howtogeek, click here.

So there you have it, our five tips for securing your home network! If you have any questions or need further assistance, please get in touch!

 

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Robin Mayo Robin Mayo

01 June 2020

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CybersecurityRemote Working

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