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Big mistake people make setting up their router

What can you do?

Checking your router for new firmware and security updates to prevent exploits like these is then a must. If you haven't checked and updated your router recently, don't feel bad, security researchers are saying that most of us don't.

So what does this mean? It means most of the routers out there are treated like plug and play appliances and they never get updated with the newest security patches, making them ripe for attacks.

Bring your router up to speed

Updating your router’s firmware is not as hard as it sounds. It depends on your router brand and model but all of them have an administrator page you access via a browser. All you have to do is type the default IP address of your particular router on your browser address bar and that will take you directly to that page.

Common IP addresses for popular routers are 192.168.1.1 for Linksys and D-Link, 192.168.0.1 for Netgear, or 192.168.2.1 for Belkin. If you're having trouble finding your router's IP, consult your user manual or you can check online for lists such as routeripaddress.com.

Once you're on the router administrator page, most of the time, you will have to enter a username and password to log in (while you're at it, please change your router's default username and password for obvious security reasons). Once logged in, check for a section called "Advanced" or "Management" to check for firmware updates.

Usually, you will have the option to check, review, download, and install your router's new firmware on the same page. Again, it depends on your router model, so check your user manual for detailed directions on how to do this.

Keep in mind, though, that router firmware updates require a restart so make sure you don't have ongoing activities that require a network connection when you apply the update.

And lastly, for peace of mind, it is recommended that you check for router firmware updates at least once every three months.

Best wireless routers to get better coverage and speed things up

If you're still not too happy with your Wi-Fi router speeds even after a firmware update, it may be time for an upgrade.

Check our tips and picks for the best routers you can get right now.

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