Last week’s FBI raid on a Bushwick loft building may have been triggered by the ultimate modern convenience: a simple unlocked wireless network.
If you’re Wi-Fi network isn’t password protected, hackers can piggyback your Internet — leaving your digital fingerprints all over their crimes.
But there are a few ways to be safe out there. Here’s what the experts tell us:
• Use the most secure encryption possible.
“There’s an encryption called WPA2 with AES. It can be cracked, but it’s a lot harder to crack,” said Robert Diamond, a Greenpoint software developer and member of the hacker collective Alpha One Labs.
Pick this encryption as an option when setting up your new wireless router.
• Pick a password that isn’t obvious.
“Use secure passwords, not dictionary words or something that can be easily guessed,” said Diamond.
And make them difficult. Don’t just replace “I” with “1” — pick a password that would be impossible to guess.
• Change your password often.
“[You should] change your Wi-Fi password more often than it would take someone to crack it,” said Diamond.
At a minimum, change your password every two months — every month if you’re really concerned about security.
— Dan MacLeod