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ClarkNova 2010-11-28 01:53 PM

Testing my own Wi-Fi security?
Is there any way to test if I have my own wi-fi setup secured? Athough I think I have everything setup OK - I don't really know and I am new to using a wireless router.

Is there a piece of legitimate software or a website I could use to verify my setting are OK and somebody cannot use my router for inapproprate use?

WestCDA 2010-11-28 05:18 PM

Provided your equipment (AP and clients) support it, use WPA2-AES security, along with an access control list on the AP - containing only the MAC (hardware) addresses for your laptop or any other additional equipment that will be using your access point. That's about as secure as you're going to get.

Additionally, turn off the setting for broadcasting your SSID - it doesn't secure anything, but does prevent casual users from seeing your network as available.

JamesK 2010-11-28 06:29 PM

MAC address filtering doesn't provide much security. It's very easy to discover and spoof MAC addresses. WPA2 provides excellent security, particularly if used with a strong password.

WestCDA 2010-11-28 09:11 PM

Regardless, WPA2 + an ACL is better security than just WPA2. Any security can be defeated with enough work - compounding the security available makes it that much harder and less attractive for those who would wish to get around it.

Nuje 2010-11-28 11:38 PM

I think the OP's question (which I'm curious about as well) is not "how to make my network secure", but rather, "how can I test how/if my network is secure?"

Like, is there a legit site (i.e., not someone trying to sell you something) that can test your connection and give a comprehensive breakdown of what vulnerabilities (and the severity of them) that your current setup contains?

JamesK 2010-11-28 11:44 PM

No, there is no test site, as anything that tests it has to be within WiFi distance. Properly configured WPA2 is very secure, provided you don't use an easily guessed password. I get 63 random character passwords from

hugh 2010-11-29 09:39 AM

Removed some posts as they were off topic and did nothing to assist the op.

To the op

Cisco offers the Pure Networks Security Scan

Jake 2010-11-29 09:48 AM

Thanks for the link Hugh. Looks like I will have to fire up IE to get the ActiveX running. But a very useful tool for someone "new to using a wireless router". :)

ClarkNova 2010-11-29 12:13 PM

Thanks for the info folks. I could run tests via one of my laptops, within wifi range obvisously, if a website is not the way to go.

I will check out Hughs link this evening. I know nobody will/should guarantee anything regarding vulnerabilities - but I am just worried I missed something obvious as I don't really know what I am doing. The info above is appreciated and informative but this is all a new language to me (so far).


North_of_Calgary 2010-11-29 09:31 PM

SheildsUP from Steve Gibson can be handy to make sure you haven't missed anything key in your router and computer. Some parts are more specific to your computer setup though, but the port protection part is obviously going to test your router settings as well.

Basically any wifi or hardwired router sold in the last 10+ years is an excellent firewall - you shouldn't need a s/w FW as well. And as far as the wifi part goes: WPA2 encryption and that's all. MAC address filtering and hiding your SSID is overkill IMO.

Coop 2010-11-29 09:53 PM

Be sure to use a strong password to access you router too.

ALSto 2010-11-29 10:52 PM

You will find some information to help you walk through a personal audit at this site:

The end of the article provides guidance on how to protect yourself.

My best practices:
  • Strong complex passwords for WPA-2 (Uppercase, lowercase & numbers, etc...)
  • Strong admin password for your AP. Repeat it twice to make it longer.
  • Limit your broadcast range. I installed my AP in the basement and can barely get a signal past my front lawn.
  • Hide your SSID broadcast.

Good luck...

JamesK 2010-11-29 11:12 PM


SheildsUP from Steve Gibson can be handy
That only checks your firewall. It has nothing to do with WiFi.

North_of_Calgary 2010-11-30 08:12 PM

And exactly where did I say to the contrary? Read my post again and note where I said "And as far as the wifi part goes".

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