WiFi can be a great way to access the Internet. But all of that convenience may come at a price, since hackers have proven themselves to be quite adept at compromising WiFi networks. Even if you use encryption that goes by the acronym of WPS, WEP, WPA2 or WPA for your WiFi network at home or at work, the truth is that hackers are skilled at taking advantage of small openings—usually caused by user error—and then wreaking havoc once they’ve found those openings. Read on to learn how WiFi networks get hacked, and how smart security systems can keep hackers at bay.
Gaps in Security
One reason that hackers can successfully compromise WiFi networks is that users sometimes leave gaps, or even gaping holes, in their security efforts. For instance, you’re asking for trouble if your WiFi setup has easily-crackable WEP encryption; if it pairs a robust WPA encryption with an easy-to-guess password; if it has WPA2 encryption with a strong password but enables weak WPS; or—the worst flaw of all—if it has zero encryption at all. Hackers can easily take advantage of any of these vulnerabilities and oversights, which could permit them to access your confidential data and perhaps wreak havoc.
With smart security systems, however, you can avoid these four problems and instead enjoy a WiFi network that puts a virtually impenetrable shield between you and hackers.
How Hackers Can Take Advantage of Security Gaps
If you have WEP encryption, which is known for being fairly easy for skilled hackers to bypass, hackers can potentially compromise other networks by using your network as an access point, and they can also cover up their tracks courtesy of the hacked access point. If you have stronger WPA encryption but make the mistake of selecting the sort of password that even a novice could guess if given enough time, hackers could possibly steal confidential data from your network.
You definitely don’t want to make the right choice of going with WPA2 and a strong password, only to undermine this choice by enabling WPS. WPS requires a nine-digit PIN to gain access, and the problem with this is that determined hackers will eventually guess any nine-digit PIN. So anyone can eventually bypass WPS if they either have the right software or have enough patience. Hackers could, by bypassing WPS, launch denial of service attacks against other parties. It goes without saying that using no encryption is a definite no-no. Hackers could take advantage by downloading porn or downloading copyrighted content that could leave you in a legal quandary.
There are plenty of possible threats out there posed by hackers, and this is unlikely to change for the foreseeable future. In order to safeguard your WiFi network, you need the right, smart security systems and the right encryption.