Configure encryption. In this case, you will be setting up a passkey. Since you may have friends who will connect to your wireless, you should not use one of your password sandwiches (read Healthy passwords). Instead create a nice passkey. If you live in an apartment, a tight suburb development or a college campus, it should be a long passkey. A short sentice is on good way. For example, you could use something like a movie line, such as "Here's#looking#at#you"
Methods of Encryption
WiFi™ is not a manufacturer or brand of equipment. It's a testing process similar to the United States' UL or the European Union's CE programs. Products must be tested to meet the respective agency standards before they can apply the agencies label to their goods.
If your network equipment has the WiFi™ label and was manufactured after March 2006, it will offer an encryption called WPA-2. If your device offers WPA-2, use it. If it does not, buy a new device and configure it to use WPA-2.
Configuration of Home WiFi™ varies greatly amongst manufacturers. Most newer WIFI equipment will offer at least five options for security:
The SSID is the name of the network. Hiding the name does not change much in terms of security. Hiding this won't slow down the geek next door, but it will hinder you every time a guest needs to use your network or you get a new device.
MAC Address Filtering
MAC address filtering will prevent a casual user from getting onto your network, but like hiding SSID, the geek next door will quickly get around this. Also, if you have people visit your house and access your wireless network, maintaining this type of feature will be very cumbersome.
This is the oldest type of wireless encryption. There are many widely available programs which will quickly break WEP encryption, so like the previous settings, the geek next door may need an extra few minutes to break WEP.
This was meant to be an interim solution between WEP and WPA/2. WPA is more secure than WEP, but our geek next door can still break this.
Currently, this is the most secure form of wireless encryption available in home networking equipment. The key to making this secure is to use a strong wireless password. If you're really paranoid, you can go up to 63 characters for your password. A casual home user should have a password no less than 10 characters. If you live in a large apartment complex in Silicon Valley, or on a technical college campus, you may want to double that length.