How Do I Keep My Neighbor from Leeching My Wireless Connection?

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How Do I Keep My Neighbor from Leeching My Wireless Connection?

Staff Writer · Dec 7, 2009

If at any moment you have thought to yourself, “How do I keep my neighbor from leeching my wireless connection?,” then you may find this information helpful.

Living in close proximity to neighbors can be an Internet disaster, especially when you haven’t taken steps to protect your wireless service. Depending on your Internet speed and wireless router, your next-door neighbor as well as the bad neighbors a few doors down can be tapping in to your Internet use. This can slow your Internet down and can open the door for hackers. Not to mention, you are the one paying the fee every month for this service.

Understanding Your Wireless Connection

If you don’t understand how wireless connectivity works, here’s a quick breakdown. Your high-speed Internet connection comes to your house via cable or telephone lines. Telephone line connectivity is known as DSL. You can then take the wire that normally hooks up to your computer, CATV or USB, and connect it to a wireless router. The router is what offers the WiFi signal.

Check Security Measures

First, check to see if your WiFi connection is secure by pulling up the available connections. If your notebook or laptop has built-in wireless, you can see the wireless connections available. After you set your WiFi up, you should be able to see a name for your connection. If you do not see a “lock” icon next to your connection, then it’s not secure.

Set Your Password

Once you receive the signal, you need to lock it down with a password. Most wireless routers offer plug and play connectivity, and normally come with a manual and CD on how to secure your wireless connection. Follow those instructions carefully.

Try using a password that you would not otherwise use with other computer related services. Also, try to stay away from obvious number combinations such as birthdays, as this technique is commonly used and hackers know this. If you plan to use a password that you often use, add some numbers or special characters to it at the end. It is also a good practice to change your passwords every few months as well.

If you think someone may be using your wireless connection, unplug the router or modem to your network immediately. Keep in mind that some of your neighbors may not know which connection is theirs and honest mistakes do happen, but you should secure your connection regardless, especially if you bank online.

Consider a Service

If you don’t feel comfortable setting up your own secure WiFi connection, consider paying for this service. There are several companies out there that can set it up for you at a minimal cost, but the piece of mind that service offers is priceless.

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