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One telltale sign of WiFi intrusion and how it can be prevented

Almost everyone these days either has one or all of the following: a smart phone, personal computer, laptop, and tablet. With the advent of these gadgets, more people are gaining access to the Internet and conducting a variety of activities on the Web, including browsing, downloading, communicating, and sharing, just to name a few.

The popularity of the Internet among gadget users has given rise to WiFi hotspots in public places like coffee shops, shopping malls, airports, restaurants, and now even public transportation. People expect there to be a WiFi hotspot everywhere they go, to the extent that some go as far as tapping into private networks, such as a family’s personal home WiFi.

WiFi security must never be underestimated. Homeowners need to protect their private WiFi network and be vigilant at all times. What is the telltale sign of an intrusion?

Significantly slower processing speeds

A slowdown on network speed does not always equate to unauthorised WiFi use. It may also be caused by a number of other factors:

  • Heavy traffic on the ISP
  • Multiple users logged on to the network at home
  • Electronic interference

However, an unexpected and sudden drop in processing speed is an early sign of network hacking. Some people may think that it is no big deal if other users “borrow” Internet connection from private networks, but it is important to note that the people who own those networks pay their providers for the connection. They are entitled to get the most out of what they are paying for, and nothing less. So, how can owners tell whether their networks have been hacked into or not? Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Switch off all devices connected to the WiFi.
  2. Don’t forget to check devices that may be WiFi active (game console, phone, and any other gadget from the other people in the household).
  3. Check if the wireless router box activity light is blinking after all devices have been disconnected.

*If the light continues to blink, someone else is on the network.

And here’s how WiFi network owners can better protect themselves against freeloaders:

  • Password-protect the system.
  • Upgrade to WPA2 for greater protection.
  • Change login/administrator password.

WiFi owners are responsible for the security of their networks. It is important to take the necessary steps to keep it private and secure.


About Alex Martin

Alex Martin is a senior writer and editor who specialises in consumer electronics and broadband service. Backed by more than 8 years experience in the Telco industry, he is up to speed with the latest innovations in digital & consumer technology. He endeavours to share his insights in ways ordinary consumers can understand.

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