What Are the Different Wireless Network Security Settings? Which One Should I Use?

This is a guest post by Jeff Piper. If you are interested to guest post in this blog, just head over to the Guest Post Guidelines.


Laptops, tablets, and smart phones are becoming more popular every day, especially since people can take them anywhere and connect to the internet via wifi, or using your wireless provider’s data network. With an HP coupon code, you can get a great deal on a laptop that you can use wirelessly around your house, but to do that, you will need to set up a wireless network. You have been reminded that you need to secureyour network to keep your computer and information safe, but many may not be sure of the best way to do it. Here is a quick run down of what you will run into, when setting up your wireless router.

If you go to set up your own wireless network, you will find that there are several security options to choose from. There are three main types of wireless security; security that is based on serial numbers, security that is based on a code associated with the wireless equipment andsecurity that requires a password.

wifi symbol

Image: Master isolated images / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

1. Security based on serial numbers is called Mac address filtering, and it is somewhat more complicated to set up than other forms ofsecurity. Each wireless networking card or device has a Mac address, which is similar to a serial number. To allow someone access to thenetwork, you add their Mac address to the list of allowed devices. If someone without a Mac address on the allowed list tries to connect, they are denied access. If you are really worried about security, you can combine this with other security settings (WEP, WPA2, etc.) to make it much more difficult for someone to access your wireless network. Someone who knows what they are doing can spoof a Mac address, but for the average network, it’s not worth the time to try.

2. Wifi Protected Setup (WPS) is a form of security that uses a code printed on the wireless router, or found in the configuration settings of the router, to add devices to the network. To add computers to this type of network, you enter the code into the device you are adding, and the router authenticates it. If the router has the code in the configuration, you are able to change the code. This is not a preferred type of wirelesssecurity because the PIN is short and structured and can easily be guessed.

3. The most common form of wireless security are the ones that requires passwords. There are several “flavors” that offer different levels of protection. While you may decide to use the option with the highest level of security, if you have older equipment, or gaming consoles, it may not be able to connect with higher security encryption types.

  • WEP is the least secure, but works with the majority of wireless devices. It requires a password that is exactly 10 or 26 characters and only allows a-f and 0-9 to be used.
  • WPA and WPA-PSK are the next level up, and they are the most commonly used encryption format. They allow use of all letters and numbers, are case sensitive, and passphrases are between 8 and 64 characters long.
  • WPA2 and WPA2-PSK are the most secure wireless security types. If possible, you should use these types of securitybecause they have the highest encryption available; however, due to hardware limitations, not all devices are able to connect using them.

About the Author: Jeff Piper is an IT professional and frugally purchases computers and their parts with a HP promo code.

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Related posts:

  1. Types of computer network security
  2. 5 Tips to Secure Your Home Wireless Network
  3. 5 Security Tips to Prevent Your Wireless Broadband Network from Being Hacked

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