How to boost the range and security of your home WiFi network

By Muhammad Asfand Yar, List Enthusiast

Everybody seems to love WiFi. So do I. After all, who doesn’t want to have seamless internet access, across different devices, while roaming around their house. But this apparent ease of installation and usefulness can make your WiFi network slow sometimes and vulnerable to attacks. To help you out, here is an infographic by List Enthusiast which discusses how we can improve the overall state of our home WiFi networks.

Here are some of the main takeaways from that infographic about how to boost signal range and WiFi security.

Better Router Placement

The placement of a wireless router is very important in deciding whether it’ll cover your whole house or not. Most people don’t think their router as a beautiful device they can show off to their peers. That’s why they place it in their garage, basement etc. which is completely wrong. Here are some of the best practices of router placement.

  • Put your router in the middle of your house.
  • Put your router away from another router especially if you’re using a 2.4Gz band router.
  • Put your router at some height from the ground floor.
  • Keep your router away from other metal objects.
  • Put your router away from other radio waves emitting devices like microwaves, cordless phones etc.

Update your router

If you have a large house like 5,000 SQ. ft., then even after optimal placement of your router, you can’t get a stable internet connection all over your house. In this situation, it’s probably the time to update your router. If you wonder where to search, this list of routers is a good place to start. It has mentioned many advanced routers, such as Nighthawk X6 by Netgear, that can easily cover up an area of 5,000 Sq. Ft.

Activate WiFi Encryption

Encryption in a Wi-Fi router is very important. Otherwise, anyone can connect to your Wi-Fi network and access your private data. Although there are many Wi-Fi Encryption protocols, only WPA2-PSK (AES) is recommended.

Change your WiFi Channel

Many people still use 2.4 GHz band routers nowadays. Apart from being slower than the 5 GHz band, it’s also more vulnerable to any interference. It’s because this band has only 14 different channels and almost all of them overlap with each other. So if you’re using a 2.4GHz, it’s better to change your default channel to the one that is used by minimum devices in your neighbourhood. Here is a useful guide about how you can change your Wi-Fi channel.

Have the latest Firmware on your router

Firmwares are like the OS of the routers. Having a latest and updated firmware means less error and security loopholes. Although upgrading a firmware is a process that differs from one router to another, following are some of the main steps:

  • Go to manufacturer’s site.
  • Enter your model number.
  • Download the latest version of your router’s firmware.
  • Go to your router’s admin panel.
  • Go under firmware upgrade settings.
  • Locate the browse button to the area of your desktop where you’ve placed your downloaded file.
  • Click on ‘upgrade firmware’.

Install Firewall/VPN

Firewall and VPN are two different things but they’re used for the same purpose: WiFi security. First, we’ll discuss firewall. A firewall is a defence mechanism that protects you from any malicious software/app. There is a hardware firewall installed in our routers. Many people unintentionally turn it off, which increases the chances of being attacked by any malware.

VPN is a little different thing. VPNs encrypts your Internet traffic and helps you stay safe at public WiFi as well as accessing any website on the internet regardless of its geographical restrictions.

Here is the full version of the infographic.

Muhammad Asfand Yar is a Tech blogger who specializes in tech roundups at List Enthusiast

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