These days, every electronic device is part of a network. In fact, they're probably part of a few different networks, especially if they're portable devices like laptops or tablets. Most people don't stop to think about the network they're connected to and whether or not it extends beyond their home. This can lead to using insecure connections out of ignorance, which in turn can lead to internet stealing or even identity theft. Don't let this happen to you. Know how to secure your network. We can show you.
The only way to secure a network completely against outside intrusion is to use wired Ethernet connections and leave the resulting network unconnected to the internet. If there is sensitive information stored on the staff computers, you might want to do this to protect this information. However, most internal wired networks are connected to the internet though a common access point that is password protected and guarded by firewall software.
Some companies and schools still use wired networks, but most newer companies and almost all residential homes operate on wireless networks. With this type of network, a signal is broadcast from a router connected to the internet modem that allows all computers within range to transmit and receive information over the internet through this access point. Most people assume their wireless network covers only their house or building, but in reality it extends into the neighborhood, especially if the router is located in an area where homes are close to one another.
To prevent anyone with an internet device from using your internet connection, which eats up your bandwidth, your wireless network should be password protected. Most providers automatically password protect your network for you when you're making your house plans but older networks will need to be manually secured by giving the router a password. You can do this by inserting the router's software disc into your computer and going into the security menu. Some networks, such as public networks in cafes and libraries, are left purposely unsecured so anyone can use them.
With any network that is connected to the internet, it is important to install firewall software to prevent this open connection between the world and your computer from acting as a road straight into your computer that hackers can use to disrupt your system or steal the personal information. The more important the information in your network is, the better your firewall should be. For household use, internet security programs from companies like Norton and Trend Micro is fine. Companies with a lot of important proprietary information on their network should have a dedicated network security team with the programming skills to construct and maintain a top of the line firewall.
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