If your Internet fails often or the speed is slower than what you are paying for, be careful because they could be intercepting your Wi-Fi signal.And it is that, if you present this type of failure and by reporting it your operator confirms that everything seems to be in order, cybercriminals could be behind these inconveniences trying to obtain your data and even your money.
The interception of wireless Internet or Wi-Fi signals is a common practice that hackers use to gain real-time access to online activities, such as a banking transaction, which could result in the commission of computer fraud or theft of sensitive information.
“This type of attack has different effects depending on the intensity of the interference, which can cause devices to be unable to connect to the network, reduce the quality of the connection, loss of data packets or even interrupted phone calls”, explains Martina López, expert of the specialized firm ESET for Latin America.
To execute these crimes, devices technically known as jammers are used, which can be understood as generators of obstacles between the signal emitted by the modem or the router and the computer or cell phone, using the same frequency range of the devices to connect, which results in affectations within the home or business network.
Given this, it is recommended to use virtual private networks (VPNs), which have encryption protocols to protect communications, as well as wired connections to carry out critical applications such as banking or other similar procedures.
On the other hand, given the vulnerability that open or public networks could represent, experts recommend avoiding connecting to the Internet by such means, since they could be more susceptible to intervention by criminals.
“Since its invention, Wi-Fi has allowed high-speed Internet access and has created new opportunities in different fields, however, it cannot be neglected that the necessary conditions must be met in order not to be a vulnerable user and face inconveniences that expose our equipment and our data, the importance of procuring reliable networks being crucial”, indicates Joey Milgram, manager of the company SolucionesSeguras.
Six shields to protect Wi-Fi
Detecting and preventing Wi-Fi signal blocking could represent a challenge, due to the nature of the operation of the so-called ‘jammers’ or interceptors, however, some preventive measures against computer espionage can be taken through this modality:
- Router placement: Placing the router in a central location, away from windows can reduce the ability of an interceptor to block the signal.
- Change channel or frequency: Suspecting that the wireless network could be being interfered with, it is advisable to change the frequency band (for example, from 2.4 GHz to 5 GHz). Use a wired connection as far as possible in the case of carrying out operations of a critical nature, banking transactions or sending emails or documents with sensitive information, it is important to consider connecting to the Internet via Ethernet cable.
- Configuring alerts: Some advanced routers can be configured to send alerts when interruptions or unusual interference are detected.
- Up-to-date equipment: Keeping the signal distributor updated could prevent intrusions, since some manufacturers usually include improvements in the latest firmware versions.
- Considering additional security systems: There are complementary security systems on the market capable of not only alerting to interference, but also allowing the use of multiple channels and frequencies to guarantee a secure connection.