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Find your router's password fast (then change it!)

Find your router's password fast (then change it!)
PHOTO COURTESY OF SHUTTERSTOCK

If you're like most people, the day you got your router, you installed it (or had it installed) and soon after got busy using it. Just minutes after you plugged it in, it was working perfectly.

Suddenly, your family and you were logging long hours on the Internet, from all your gadgets. Those hours turned into days, then weeks, then months. You browse the Internet, watch streaming TV shows and movies, and chat it up on social media sites, without a care in the world.

But, it's likely you forgot a critical step during your router's installation: changing its default password. Maybe you're thinking you don't need to protect yourself with a password because no one lives nearby. So, who's going to steal your signal? Or maybe it's wired, not wireless, so you're thinking you're not in danger.

Both those assumptions are wrong. Anyone can walk or drive up to your property and use your signal, and you don't know what they're using it for. Plus, even wired routers connect to the Internet, so they are vulnerable to hackers.

Still, you may be thinking your router's password is fine. It's long and confusing, so no one will ever figure it out. Except, hackers and everyone else can find your router's secret password in just a few seconds.

Want to know how? Click the blue box below to get to this Cool Site, RouterPasswords. Once on, do a quick search for your router's manufacturer. Click on your manufacturer's name, and RouterPasswords will display a list of all its router models, and their passwords.

For example, find Cisco in RouterPasswords' drop-down menu. Click on Find Password, and in one second you'll see passwords for dozens of Cisco routers. If your router also requires a username, that will be listed right next to the password.

Warning: Now that you know how to find your router's default password, we strongly suggest that you immediately change it. If you can find your router's default password in just a second, so can hackers.

Hackers break into routers all the time. They break in, and install malware to take it over. In fact, hackers are counting on you to not change your router's passwords. Many people don't, and it's a huge problem.

Not all routers and other hardware are protected by firewalls and anti-virus software. (Make sure you have a good anti-virus program installed, and make sure it's up to date. Visit the Komando Security Center for the latest anti-virus programs.)

If your router is hacked, you may need a fix from the hardware manufacturer, or your Internet provider. That's a hassle, and it can take a while. Check out this other Cool Site, for F-Secure Router Checker, to see if your router has been hacked. If it has, Router Checker will provide tips for getting it fixed.

Note: Nothing keeps you protected better than a secure password. Here's one of our tips for creating a great, secure password.

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