Many of us work from home these days but is your home actually safe to work from? Securing your home network has become more critical than ever. A secure home network is essential for protecting your personal data from hackers.

From phishing to smishing, it’s getting harder to avoid a breach. We often have fewer safeguards in place at home than at work which puts both personal and company data at risk.

About 46% of businesses saw at least one cybersecurity incident within two months of moving to remote work.

The good news is that there’s no lack of materials on home network security. Many of the steps are straightforward and can help you avoid a data breach at home.

The American National Security Agency (NSA) has provided some best practices for securing your home network. Although they’re from an America agency, they are just as relevant to us here in the UK. We’ll highlight some of the most helpful tips below.

1. Change Default Passwords and Usernames

The first step to secure your home network is to change the default login. This means changing the passwords and usernames of your router and connected devices. Default passwords and usernames are often well-known to hackers. Changing these default credentials is an essential step in securing your home network.

To access your router you’ll need to type it’s IP address into a browser. Below is a list of common Home Broadband router IP addresses in the UK:

  • BT –
  • EE – 192.168. 1.254
  • NOW – 192.168. 0.1
  • Plusnet –
  • Sky – 192.168. 0.1
  • TalkTalk –
  • Virgin Media –
  • Vodafone –

Once in just input your current admin credentials supplied by your broadband provider and find the appropriate page (each router will be different). Change the user name and then change the password to something long and memorable.

2. Enable Encryption

Encryption is a process of encoding information. This is means that only authorised parties can read it. Enabling encryption on your home network is crucial to protect your data. Most routers will have this on by default but it’s work checking that your router says it’s using WPA2 or WPA3 somewhere. It keeps hackers from intercepting and reading your data.

3. Update Firmware

The firmware is the software that runs on your router and other connected devices. Manufacturers release firmware updates to fix security vulnerabilities and add new features. Updating the firmware on your router is important to securing your home network. You can usually check for firmware updates from the router’s web interface. You can also find updates on the manufacturer’s website.

This is critical to remember because a lot of people never do this. They only see the router app during setup and rarely go back unless there is a need. Set a calendar item to check your router app at least once per month for updates.

4. Enable Firewall

A firewall is a network security system that monitors and controls network traffic. This includes both incoming and outgoing traffic. Enabling a firewall on your router can help protect your network. It defends against malicious traffic and unauthorised access. Most modern routers have a built-in firewall. You can typically enable this through the router’s web interface.

5. Disable Unused Services

Most routers come with a range of services that manufacturers enable by default. These services can include file sharing, remote management, and media streaming. Disabling any unused services can reduce the risk of a hacker exploiting them. They often use these services to gain access to home networks. Only enable services that you need and are essential for your network.

6. Secure Wi-Fi Network

Your Wi-Fi network is one of the most critical aspects of your home network. Securing your Wi-Fi network involves several steps. These include:

  • Changing the default SSID (network name)
  • Disabling SSID broadcast (this one is definitely best practice but it means you’d need to enabled it any time you want to connect a new device)
  • Enabling MAC address filtering
  • Disabling WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup)

These steps can help prevent unauthorised access to your Wi-Fi network. Some of these steps are fairly technical and you may require help from your ISP.

7. Use Strong Passwords

Passwords are a critical component of any security system. Using weak or easily guessable passwords can make your network vulnerable. Ensure that you use strong passwords for your router and other connected devices. A strong password should be at least 12 characters long. We recommend using the Three Random Words approach.

8. Create a Guest Network

Do you have guests, such as your children’s friends, who need to access your Wi-Fi network? If so, create a separate guest network. A guest network is a separate Wi-Fi network that guests can use. This gives them access the internet without accessing your primary network. This can help protect your primary network from potential security threats.

9. Limit Physical Access

Physical access to your router and other connected devices can be a security risk. Ensure that you place your router in a secure location, such as a locked cabinet or a room with limited access. Also, ensure that you disable physical access to the router’s web interface. Especially if you have guests or children who may tamper with the settings.

If you feel your organisation could benefit from expert advice to secure your remote workers then get in touch today.

Article used with permission from The Technology Press.