Unauthorized users jumping on your Wi-Fi connection not only devour your bandwidth, but can also wreck havoc on your network and use your connection to perform illegal activities. Properly configuring network encryption and setting a password is enough to protect your Wi-Fi from sophisticated hackers and common freeloaders. Anyone who doesn't know the password would have to physically connect to the network with a wired connection to gain access.

Step 1

Connect the computer you're using to secure the Wi-Fi connection to the network either via Ethernet cable or wireless connection.

Step 2

Determine the Router's Gateway IP address by pressing "Windows Key-R," typing "cmd," pressing "Enter," typing "ipconfig" in the command prompt and pressing "Enter" again. The Gateway IP address will be listed next to the "Default Gateway."

Step 3

Open any Web browser, type the Gateway IP address in the address bar and press "Enter." You can close the Command Prompt window at this point.

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Step 4

Enter the username and password if the router requests it: the default values can usually be found on the router itself.

Step 5

Click on the "Security" or "Wi-Fi" configuration listing in the router's interface; the actual wording of the feature varies between models.

Step 6

Select a security mode from the drop-down menu if one is available. If possible, select WPA/WPA2.

Step 7

Set the encryption type to TKIP if possible. As long as the setting isn't "off" the encryption is sufficient.

Step 8

Set a password in the password field.

Step 9

Save and apply the changes. All computers and devices using Wi-Fi will have to reconnect to the network using the network password.