how should you secure your home wireless network for teleworking

How To Secure Your Home Wireless Network For Teleworking

Staying Safe While Working From Home

If you’re one of the increasing numbers of people working remotely for at least some of your professional hours, it’s important to ensure that you’re using a home wireless network that’s safe and secure.

In this article, we’ll explore what teleworking is to establish whether this refers to your job and discuss the risks that this type of work poses to the private files of your employer. You’ll learn five simple steps that you can follow today to make your network more secure. Let’s dive in.

What Is Teleworking?

The concept of working from home has become mainstream since 2019, but before then, it was better known as teleworking. Teleworking is a model of work used by many offices whereby employees can work from their own homes but are required to communicate with colleagues through video calls, emails and telephone calls.

Some people may engage with teleworking from a location outside their home, such as a coffee shop or co-working space - but most do so from the comfort of their own lounges. In some cases, this type of remote work is completed from a satellite office separate from the company’s main office space.

Teleworkers are usually required to complete their tasks during standard office hours, differentiating this type of work practice from freelancing, whereby workers choose their own hours. Teleworkers are most likely to split their professional time between in-office work and home working.

More and more companies are offering teleworking opportunities to their employees, noting increased productivity and significant cost savings. More employees are demanding the right to work in this hybrid manner, too, even being willing to take a pay cut to do so.

Why Is It Important To Secure Your Home Wireless Network?

When working in an office managed by your employer, they’ll have taken steps to ensure that the employee Wi-Fi network is secure. This function is usually performed by the digital services team. In contrast, your personal home network isn’t secured by your employer. This means that your wireless router is at risk of being attacked by hackers.

It’s important to secure your home Wi-Fi network to protect your and your employer’s personal data and private files.

Secure Home Wireless Network: A Step-By-Step Guide

Protecting your private property through a secure home wireless system is a little complicated but achievable if you follow these five steps. All of these protection methods can be achieved simply by using the details written on the bottom or side of your Wi-Fi box.

Change Your Wireless Router’s Admin Password

Use the URL and login details on your Wi-Fi router to access the admin pages for your network. The first step in protecting your network is to amend these login details as a matter of priority, which can be done within the admin pages. It’s important to do this because if someone were to break into your home, they could access the network’s admin pages using the details on the box and make amendments that could put your device and files at risk.

You should keep your new username and password private, only sharing it with others in your home who you trust. This will ensure protected access to your Wi-Fi network’s admin settings.

Update The Firmware on Your Wireless Router

Using the URL and login details from your Wi-Fi router, ensure that your wireless network is using the latest firmware. The broadband company will offer updates for the boxes intermittently with important fixes and features. If there is a security risk, the company will provide an update to address it, so it’s important to check for firmware updates regularly.

Update the Network Name

When you first purchase a home broadband subscription, your network will have been given a specific name. It likely includes the name of the provider alongside a set of numbers. It’s advised to change this name as the numbers can sometimes relate to the model type, while the brand name identifies who you pay for your internet connection.

This information can help bad actors access your network more easily, meaning they’ll have a better chance of stealing confidential files. You can easily change the name of your network by logging into admin settings using the URL on the side or bottom of the box.

Activate Network Encryption Settings

Using your wifi network’s URL, go to the admin page, where you can choose your encryption type. There will be a list of options such as WEP, WPA, WPA2 and WPA3. The former two options are the least secure and should be avoided. If your network has defaulted to these, you should change them immediately. WPA3 is the best option, providing the most reliable network protection. To secure the encryption settings further, create a security key.

Create a Guest Account for Your Network

While rare, it’s sometimes possible that an attempt to hack your network and steal from you or the company you work for will be performed by someone you know - a family member, friend, or guest staying in your home. They may do so to obtain items to blackmail you with or to find out about the confidential work you do.

To avoid this risk to you or your employer’s documents, create a guest network within the admin settings of your wifi. This is a separate access point that doesn’t prevent you from still using the main network. Direct anyone visiting or staying in your home to use the guest Wi-Fi network.