How to Keep a D-Link Router Secure

Introduction

Your wireless router transmits a signal through the air and may be detected hundreds of feet away. By default, anybody nearby can use your network. It is highly recommended that you take some simple safety steps such as encrypting and also limiting access to your wireless network.

Encrypting the information that is transmitted through the air is the best way to protect communications from eavesdroppers. The two main types of encryption are Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP). WPA2 is the best choice but many older routers do not have this option. If your router doesn't have WPA2, you should upgrade.

To limit access to your router it is recommended that you use a strong password that isn't freely shared or used anywhere else.

This guide will walk you through the process of protecting your wireless network.

1 Picking a Strong Password

Wherever possible, you should pick a password that is impossible to guess and is also resistant to brute-force attacks.

Some devices or systems do not allow special characters or they may have their own requirements.

Password Dos and Don'ts

Dos
Green Check
  • Passwords should be long, 8-12 characters or more.
  • Passwords should be something easy for you to remember, but hard for others to guess or lookup.
  • Passwords should have lots of different character types: upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols.
  • Replacing letters with symbols is a simple way to achieve this: use @ for a, and ( for c, as example.
  • Passwords are personal, most services have a way to create a 'linked' account or share services with trusted friends and family.
  • Change passwords regularly. Every 90 to 180 days; this helps keep your accounts from being compromised long-term.
  • If you must write down a password or make note of it, do so only in specially designed programs, or keep and hold the physical copies with the same care and respect you would a social security card or birth certificate. Remember; anyone with your password "is you".
Example of a good password
Don'ts
Red X
  • Don't use short passwords; computers can guess them very easily.
  • Don't use a common word you can find in a dictionary.
  • Don't use information that can be looked up or guessed, such as a birthday, anniversary, or pet's name.
  • Don't use the same password for everything. If one password is compromised, all of the same ones are compromised across all your accounts.
  • Don't share passwords. People with your password "are you" to a computer system, or a service.
  • Don't keep the same password forever. Assume that, at some point, it will be guessed, seen, or otherwise compromised, and it must be changed.
  • Don't write down passwords in the open, or save them in non-encrypted files on your computer.
Example of a bad password
Password Resources

2 Login

  1. Using a computer that is connected to the D-Link router, open a web browser such as Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.
  2. Enter one of the following addresses into your browser address bar:
    • http://dlinkrouter.local
    • http://192.168.0.1
      dlinkrouter.local

  3. When prompted, enter the credentials to log into the router.

    For DIR-xxx routers, the default credentials are:

    • Username: admin
    • Password: no password

    For DSR-xxx routers, the default credentials are:

    • Username: admin
    • Password: admin

? What is the color of your router's interface?

  1. White and Blue (New version)
  2. Black and Orange (Old version)

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Your wireless router transmits a signal through the air and may be detected hundreds of feet away. By default, anybody nearby can use your network. It is highly recommended that you take some simple safety steps such as encrypting and also limiting access to your wireless network.

Encrypting the information that is transmitted through the air is the best way to protect communications from eavesdroppers. The two main types of encryption are Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP). WPA2 is the best choice but many older routers do not have this option. If your router doesn't have WPA2, you should upgrade.

To limit access to your router it is recommended that you use a strong password that isn't freely shared or used anywhere else.

This guide will walk you through the process of protecting your wireless network.

Wherever possible, you should pick a password that is impossible to guess and is also resistant to brute-force attacks.

Some devices or systems do not allow special characters or they may have their own requirements.

Password Dos and Don'ts

Dos
Green Check
  • Passwords should be long, 8-12 characters or more.
  • Passwords should be something easy for you to remember, but hard for others to guess or lookup.
  • Passwords should have lots of different character types: upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols.
  • Replacing letters with symbols is a simple way to achieve this: use @ for a, and ( for c, as example.
  • Passwords are personal, most services have a way to create a 'linked' account or share services with trusted friends and family.
  • Change passwords regularly. Every 90 to 180 days; this helps keep your accounts from being compromised long-term.
  • If you must write down a password or make note of it, do so only in specially designed programs, or keep and hold the physical copies with the same care and respect you would a social security card or birth certificate. Remember; anyone with your password "is you".
Example of a good password
Don'ts
Red X
  • Don't use short passwords; computers can guess them very easily.
  • Don't use a common word you can find in a dictionary.
  • Don't use information that can be looked up or guessed, such as a birthday, anniversary, or pet's name.
  • Don't use the same password for everything. If one password is compromised, all of the same ones are compromised across all your accounts.
  • Don't share passwords. People with your password "are you" to a computer system, or a service.
  • Don't keep the same password forever. Assume that, at some point, it will be guessed, seen, or otherwise compromised, and it must be changed.
  • Don't write down passwords in the open, or save them in non-encrypted files on your computer.
Example of a bad password
Password Resources
  1. Using a computer that is connected to the D-Link router, open a web browser such as Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.
  2. Enter one of the following addresses into your browser address bar:
    • http://dlinkrouter.local
    • http://192.168.0.1
      dlinkrouter.local

  3. When prompted, enter the credentials to log into the router.

    For DIR-xxx routers, the default credentials are:

    • Username: admin
    • Password: no password

    For DSR-xxx routers, the default credentials are:

    • Username: admin
    • Password: admin
  1. After you login to the router's user interface, move the mouse cursor over the Settings tab.
  2. Click Wireless from the drop down menu.
    D-Link web interface

  3. You may change the Wi-Fi Name (SSID) for both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands at this time if you choose to. The network name (or SSID) is the name others will see when searching for available wireless networks in the area.
    Web interface with SSID names highlighted

  4. Next to Password, enter your preferred wireless password on both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz wireless networks.
    Web interface with password fields highlighted

  5. Click Save to save your configuration.
  6. Your wireless security settings have now been updated.
    • Any time you change your wireless security settings you will need to reconnect your wireless devices.
    • If your router is dual-band, meaning it has a 2.4 and a 5 GHz network you may need to repeat the steps listed above for each network because each network may be controlled individually. You must use different network names for each band.
    • If your router has a guest network you will need to repeat the steps listed above for the guest network because it is controlled separately.

Some precautions should be taken in order to keep your password secure.

Best practices:

  • Do not use a master password that you use everywhere (such as email, work, school, home, network)
  • If possible, do not share your password with anybody.
  • Passwords that are shared with others, like for a home network, should only be shared if necessary.
  • Be aware when typing your password in public, or that in no way anyone is watching.
  • Some types of electronic devices like computers and smartphones can remember passwords, so beware of devices that are not yours.
  • Make a schedule of when to change your password. For example, every 180 days.
  • It is not recommended to write down passwords. But if you have to, make sure that it is neither physically nor visually accessible by others.
  1. After you login to the router's user interface, click on the Setup tab on the top of the configuration page
  2. Click the Wireless Settings button on the left side.
    Web interface, wireless settings highlighted

  3. Click on Manual Wireless Network Setup.
    Web interface, manual wireless network setup highlighted

  4. Scroll down the page to Wireless Security Mode.
  5. Enter your preferred wireless password under Pre-Shared Key section.
    Web interface, pre-shared key highlighted

  6. Click Save Settings to save your configuration.
  7. Your wireless security settings have now been updated.
    • Any time you change your wireless security settings you will need to reconnect your wireless devices.
    • If your router is dual-band, meaning it has a 2.4 and a 5 GHz network you may need to repeat the steps listed above for each network because each network may be controlled individually. You must use different network names for each band.
    • If your router has a guest network you will need to repeat the steps listed above for the guest network because it is controlled separately.
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