Your router is part of your window to the world. At home everything you see and do on the internet goes through your router, and wireless routers are becoming the normal way of connecting. But if you can see out the window, there is a possibility someone may be looking in. And you don’t want that. Your wireless router should be set up so that information comes and goes only when you want it to, and is only used by those to whom you have given permission.
Why change the settings on your wireless router?
If you don’t someone else can connect to your WiFi and use your bandwidth. What difference does that make?
Slows down your connection. Your ISP only gives you a certain download/upload speed. The more it is being shared the slower it will get.
Security. If they can get on your wireless, they may be able to get inside your computer. They may get personal information from your computer.
Malware and viruses can be installed on your computer without your knowledge.
Illegal Activity. Your internet may be used to do file sharing, or send spam. Worst case, imagine that child pornography or some other terrible activity was originating from your connection. It may be difficult to prove that you were not involved.
Consider this scenario: “When setting up a wireless network at home, I was surprised to be able to connect to my neighbor’s unsecured wireless router. Not only could I have used his bandwidth for free, but had I been so inclined, I could have used the connection for illegal activities. If the police came looking, he may not have been able to prove the activity didn’t come from one of his computers.”
Properly securing a wireless router is not difficult.
There are a number of settings to look at.
SSID -Service Set IDentifier- This is the name of your wireless connection. You give it a unique name, preferably one that doesn’t directly relate to you. For example you may wish to avoid using your personal name, or other personal information that may identify you. It can be a random set of characters if you wish. Routers will often come from the factory with a default name, such as “dlink” or “linksys”. Be sure to change this.
Change the administrator name and password.
Use a passkey, or password. Turn on WPA (avoid WEP) for authentication and TKIP for encryption.
(From CNN) — It’s bad enough that we have to fear identity thieves who are trying to scam us with malicious messages sent from PCs.
We now must worry about being targeted by our household appliances, as well.
An Internet-security firm has discovered what they are calling a global cyber attack launched from more than 100,000 everyday consumer gadgets such as home-networking routers, televisions and at least one “smart” refrigerator.
If you have internet connected appliances, do you like them? Have you had any problems? Any words of advice for others?
If you don’t have internet connected appliances, tell us why not in the comments section below.
Suppose you are going outside? What kind of shoes should you put on? You need to know where you are going and what the conditions are. Is it wet out? Then the boots need to be waterproof. Is it cold? Then they need to be warm. No one pair of shoes or boots will be the best for all occasions. What you wear to play in the snow may not be appropriate for a formal occasion.I have a pair of safety boots. I wear them on construction. I have a pair of dress shoes. I wear them to weddings. I have a pair of high rubber boots. I wear them when it is raining. Any of these would serve all three functions, but very not well.
The same with portable devices – computers, smartphones, tablets etc. Any of them will do most of what we need. However different situations call for equipment best suited for the task. I don’t want to spend all day writing, using spreadsheets and doing graphic design on a smart phone or tablet with a touch screen. On the other hand, my laptop won’t fit in my pocket.
XP has been the favorite Windows operating system for years. Some people have used nothing else, so this is what they know. Like most other Windows systems it got better with age, with the possible exception of Millenium or ME, for which no one had a fondness.
Since the release of XP we have seen Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8.0, and 8.1.
Support will end for XP on April 8, 2014, after a long and successful life. Read about it here Continue reading Goodbye XP? Are you ready and why does it matter?
Most people today keep their emails online, or in the cloud. You likely access Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, or others by opening your web browser and reading and replying right from there. Gone are the days when we had to go home and fire up the desktop to check our mail. Now it is possible to receive and instantly respond to email wherever we are.
Of course, there are a lot of advantages to this. You can access your email across multiple devices: smart phone, tablet, or computer. It’s easy to go to a public wi-fi and log in to your account to check your emails. While instant messaging, texting and social networking takes care of a lot of our communication, we may still receive emails when documents or photos, etc. need to be sent. Many websites are happy to send you their newsletters. And of course, compared to social networking, there is a higher level of privacy for emails that you may not wish to share with all your friends.
However, if you have a computer at home, or a laptop that travels with you, it is possible to save emails offline. This will allow you to review and search your emails from various accounts. They will be in a folder on your computer and then can be securely backed up when you backup your other files. (Yes, Backup!! read about that here) Continue reading Save Emails Offline
These can appear in your mailbox disguised as a legitimate fax from a reputable company, in this case Xerox. . In fact, the link to Xerox is valid and will send you to their website. However, the same cannot be said about the attachment. Although innocent looking, it may contain dangerous zip files. A zip file can be used to get past email filters that will not allow an executable file to be delivered. This can properly be used to send a legitimate file to someone.