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Jon Acosta

@comcast.net

Enabling SSID Broadcast

Hi there,

I have a linksys router, and I disabled the SSID broadcast just now.. For the longest time my router was set up without a password, but I recently moved into a new apartment and I kept getting kicked off the internet. I decided to set up a password based on some steps I found online, and now I'm at an even worse problem.

I put »192.168.1.1 on my web browser, and disabled my SSID Boradcast since it said I would be safer that way. I was about to set up a password after that, but my internet stopped working all together. I had to hook up the internet cable to my laptop in order to get online, and even so I can't access the linksys page anymore. I type in »192.168.1.1, and Chrome says it encounters a problem. Now none of our laptops can access the internet, and I was wondering if anyone could help me out.


Juggernaut
Irreverent or irrelevant?
Premium
join:2006-09-05
Kelowna, BC
kudos:2

2 recommendations

Sounds like you got jacked for the router. Reset it, and then IMMEDIATELY login, and set a WPA-2 encryption, and PW. SSID means nothing. I can see non-broadcasting rigs. I can hack them.
--
Better to have it and not need it, then need it and not have it.


SoonerAl
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-23
Norman, OK
kudos:5

2 recommendations

reply to Jon Acosta
Click for full size
inSSIDer WiFi environment scan example
Personally I always broadcast my two home SSIDs. No reason not to if you use strong encryption, ie. WPA2 or at a minimum WPA, with a long random encryption key/password/passphrase.

»theillustratednetwork.mvps.org/L···ity.html

You also might run a short wireless environment survey using inSSIDer. Choose a broadcast channel with the minimum interference from nearby networks. The screen shot is a recent scan of my current wireless environment. I have two networks Boomer and Sooner.

»www.metageek.net/products/inssider
--
"When all else fails read the instructions..."
MS-MVP Windows Expert - Consumer


Brano
I hate Vogons
Premium,MVM
join:2002-06-25
Burlington, ON
kudos:11
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
·Bell Fibe

1 recommendation

said by SoonerAl:

Personally I always broadcast my two home SSIDs. No reason not to if you use strong encryption, ie. WPA2 or at a minimum WPA, with a long random encryption key/password/passphrase.

Hiding SSID does not add any additional security whether you have strong or weak encryption/password set.

1) Change the SSID to something else than what's default. Keep it visible.
2) Use WPA2/PSK with strong password
3) You may want to check the channel and use one that is free or least used.


SoonerAl
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-23
Norman, OK
kudos:5

1 edit
said by Brano:

said by SoonerAl:

Personally I always broadcast my two home SSIDs. No reason not to if you use strong encryption, ie. WPA2 or at a minimum WPA, with a long random encryption key/password/passphrase.

Huh?
--
"When all else fails read the instructions..."
MS-MVP Windows Expert - Consumer


Brano
I hate Vogons
Premium,MVM
join:2002-06-25
Burlington, ON
kudos:11
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
·Bell Fibe

2 edits

3 recommendations

said by SoonerAl:

said by Brano:

said by SoonerAl:

Personally I always broadcast my two home SSIDs. No reason not to if you use strong encryption, ie. WPA2 or at a minimum WPA, with a long random encryption key/password/passphrase.

Huh?

Hiding SSID does not add any additional security whether you have strong or weak encryption/password set.

(Your sentence implies that you don't need to hide SSID if you have strong encryption. I'm saying hiding SSID has nothing to do with encryption settings. Just don't hide it. Hiding SSID can only bring confusion and longer connect times to some clients or not connect at all.)

twixt

join:2004-06-27
North Vancouver, BC

1 recommendation

reply to SoonerAl
said by SoonerAl:

said by Brano:

said by SoonerAl:

Personally I always broadcast my two home SSIDs. No reason not to if you use strong encryption, ie. WPA2 or at a minimum WPA, with a long random encryption key/password/passphrase.

Huh?

-

Q: Does taking the numbers off the front door of your house prevent people from breaking in - if the house security is poor?

A: No.

-

All you do when you disable SSID broadcast is make life more difficult for yourself - when it comes time to identify your particular wireless modem.

Note: The "bad guys" can sniff your connection whether you broadcast an SSID or not. Turning off SSID to have a "more secure" network is a myth.

Google "False Authority Syndrome" for more info on why this myth continues to perpetuate itself.


Juggernaut
Irreverent or irrelevant?
Premium
join:2006-09-05
Kelowna, BC
kudos:2

1 recommendation

Al has probably forgot more about WLAN sec than most people know. I believe that he was referring to the fact that, most people use the same name(s) for the SSID, login name, and PW. Or, a derivative of them.

Easy to crack when you have a basic foundation to work from. Yes, people are that silly...
--
Better to have it and not need it, then need it and not have it.


SoonerAl
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-23
Norman, OK
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to Brano
I suppose it was a poorly worded sentence...

If you go to my home wireless security page that I linked to you will see that I do not recommend hidding a SSID as a security measure...

»theillustratednetwork.mvps.org/L···ity.html
--
"When all else fails read the instructions..."
MS-MVP Windows Expert - Consumer


Anav
Sarcastic Llama? Naw, Just Acerbic
Premium
join:2001-07-16
Dartmouth, NS
kudos:5

1 edit

1 recommendation

reply to Jon Acosta
Actually Im Sooner AL, Its just a persona Ive made up when I went to give reasonable measured, timely and accurate advice to struggling newbies, and I do so in a mature manner, devoid of excess emotion. If I want to be passionate and snarky I use my true llama colours! ;-P

As far the yoyo heads basterdizing my sentence phrasing, shut it..........
SSID is designed for two things.
a. so a legitimate user can easily find the right AP
b. so a legitmate user can quickly join the right network.

Doing anything else is contra-indicated and bad for your health.

What He, err I, was saying is that no settings are of any use on a wifi router unless you have security to begin with, and by the way, dont forget to just say no to unsecure wifi. (including changing the default password of the wifi router).


Jon Acosta

@tmodns.net
reply to Jon Acosta
well I'm not sure if it has anything to do with anything, but as soon as I disabled it the internet stopped working. I didn't do anything else to it.

I can't really try any suggestions because I can't even access the settings to change anything. I type in the IP address and my browsers say they can't open that site.I'm not exactly tech savvy either when it comes to internet configurations.. I'm just looking for a way to get it back to normal.


SoonerAl
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-23
Norman, OK
kudos:5

1 recommendation

said by Jon Acosta :

well I'm not sure if it has anything to do with anything, but as soon as I disabled it the internet stopped working. I didn't do anything else to it.

I can't really try any suggestions because I can't even access the settings to change anything. I type in the IP address and my browsers say they can't open that site.I'm not exactly tech savvy either when it comes to internet configurations.. I'm just looking for a way to get it back to normal.

Disabled what? What's it?

If you disabled the SSID broadcast you inviting connection issues...

If you can connect to the router using an Ethernet cable temporairely and reconfigure the router so the SSID is being broadcast and/or change whatever else you changed.

As was noted by everyone so far just don't disable the SSID broadcast. It only causes issues and is not a valid security measure. Use strong encryption with a long random key/password/passphrase. See the link I posted twice now for suggestions for properly securing your wireless network.

You also might simply reset the wireless router back to its factory defaults and start over. Check the users manual and the manufacturers support site for help doing that.
--
"When all else fails read the instructions..."
MS-MVP Windows Expert - Consumer


Juggernaut
Irreverent or irrelevant?
Premium
join:2006-09-05
Kelowna, BC
kudos:2
Yea, I suggested that in the second post, a reset that is.

I wonder if the problem is with Chrome? I've never had an issue connecting to a non-broadcasting AP, as long as the correct one is chosen, of course.
--
Better to have it and not need it, then need it and not have it.


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
reply to Jon Acosta
I am going to go against the grain of other advice offered in this thread. There is nothing wrong with security by obscurity (but that should not be your only protection). There is a reason why a Marine special ops team is not likely to wear dress blues on missions. I have always blocked SSIDs for any wireless network I have setup for my own use (except for the occasional honeypot), and I have never had any problems with any browser, OS, or wireless NIC being able to connect to my network because of it.

Having said that, you do need to understand that you will need to setup your wireless clients to connect to a non-broadcasting connection because that connection will not be found automatically. If you don't understand that (or how to do it), then don't hide your SSID.

As for why you are now unable to connect even with an Ethernet cable connection, I suspect that Juggernaut is correct, and you will need to to a pushbutton factory reset on your router to regain control of it. Of course it is also possible that your previous symptom of getting kicked off the Internet was a warning that your router was about to go belly up, and that has finally happened (and it was a coincidence that it died shortly after you disabled the SSID).
--
History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower


Anav
Sarcastic Llama? Naw, Just Acerbic
Premium
join:2001-07-16
Dartmouth, NS
kudos:5

1 recommendation

Actually Netflubber, your wrong, hiding your essid is akin to the marine special ops wearing flaming Orange jumpsuits. What is attractive to the types of folks hacking wifi connections is hidden ESSIDS. Most ill-informed people, use hide essid and think they have security and thus dont need other more complicated security tools. Its like a magnet!!

Your advice is poor and suggest that you reconsider posting such garbage in the future. ESSID has NOTHING i repeat NOTHING to do with security. Obscurity is a false and misleading word to use as well.
--
Ain't nuthin but the blues! "Albert Collins".
Leave your troubles at the door! "Pepe Peregil" De Sevilla. Just Don't Wifi without WPA, "Yul Brenner"

LlamaWorks Equipment


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
said by Anav:

Actually Netflubber, your wrong, hiding your essid is akin to the marine special ops wearing flaming Orange jumpsuits. What is attractive to the types of folks hacking wifi connections is hidden ESSIDS. Most ill-informed people, use hide essid and think they have security and thus dont need other more complicated security tools. Its like a magnet!!

Your advice is poor and suggest that you reconsider posting such garbage in the future. ESSID has NOTHING i repeat NOTHING to do with security. Obscurity is a false and misleading word to use as well.

You are of course entitled to your opinion, even if your opinion is derived from poor reading comprehension (or perhaps just extreme tunnel vision), and posted using poor spelling/grammar.

Your opinion aside, what I do has served me well for many years. FWIW my network is within the range of many computer science majors who delight in engaging in network mischief, just see if they can get away with it (hence my occasional use of honeypots)...check out my location on the map listed on my DSLR profile page.

I also have worked with many major corporate clients who use the same strategy (their idea, not mine). Perhaps they are wrong too (at least in your opinion), but it has worked quite well for them too.

[disclaimer]Naturally, YMMV[/disclaimer]
--
History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower


Anav
Sarcastic Llama? Naw, Just Acerbic
Premium
join:2001-07-16
Dartmouth, NS
kudos:5
Goody for you and your post highlights your major flaw in providing information. Most people are not you and have far less experience and/or knowledge. What you posted, although not criminal, is not wise.

maximusqb

join:2005-02-21
reply to Jon Acosta
I am of the opinion that not broadcast you ssid is silly and pointless. Reset the Router and start over!

gaylordsecur

join:2012-07-02
reply to Jon Acosta
You need to reset your router. This is the genuine problem.


Anav
Sarcastic Llama? Naw, Just Acerbic
Premium
join:2001-07-16
Dartmouth, NS
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to Jon Acosta
If someone else has gotten control over your router, simply unplug it from your modem and reset it to defaults (usually there is a pin hole which you can use a paperclip to push in for about 10 secs (lights will start flashing). After thats done setup your router first, with WPA2 security for the wifi (20+ password random for that) AND A ROUTER PASSWORD thats random and as long as possible. Use a PC connected to the router (wired) for the setup above. Then reconnect the wan cable (from the modem).
--
Ain't nuthin but the blues! "Albert Collins".
Leave your troubles at the door! "Pepe Peregil" De Sevilla. Just Don't Wifi without WPA, "Yul Brenner"

LlamaWorks Equipment

cwcjr

join:2002-08-02
Huntsville, AL
Reviews:
·WOW Internet and..
·Knology

1 edit

1 recommendation

reply to Jon Acosta
If you disable the SSID broadcast, then most of the clients (all of them that use Windows to manage wireless connections) must have the checkbox set to 'connect even if ssid is not being broadcast'. This is done in the properties advanced settings for that network SSID.

Before Windows Vista/7 came along, Windows XP (average user) would not display in the available networks list nor acknowledge that it was actually 'seeing' a network that was not responding to the queries to provide SSID information. Since Vista/7, when Windows goes to look for available networks, it tells you they are there, anyway. What not broadcasting the SSID (not responding to the information query) does is make collision avoidance schemes that are built into the WiFi routers less effective in high traffic areas. Thus, you have connection and throughput issues and if you failed to setup the client to connect even if the ID is not being broadcast, you will drop off when it is time to renew your lease.

Also, once they did check that box, the clients trying to log into your system would send queries (with the appropriate information) to try to login to your network. IE, they would start looking for it, even if it was not around. Thus putting the information "out there" for hackers to work on.

All explanations may not be technically accurate to the infinite detail (n-th degree), but not broadcasting the SSID does NOT mean hidden to Windows 7 or any other WiFi tool.

Locks are only to help keep honest people honest.

As noted in other places, inSSIDer by MetaGeek is a nifty tool.

Just a thought...

bbear2
Premium
join:2003-10-06
94045
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to Jon Acosta
The #1 reason to broadcast your SSID is because you can. Some of these really had me ROTFLMAO. Might get some strange looks from your neighbors though .

»Best SSID's you have seen - OMG 18 pages worth.

»www.teamliquid.net/blogs/viewblo···d=283904

sdx

join:2012-08-25
San Antonio, TX

1 recommendation

reply to Jon Acosta
I just want to say, as tech support, for the love of all that is Holy, that if you're going to take the advice and change the admin password of your modem/router, WRITE IT DOWN somewhere safe.

I *hate* getting calls where people changed their admin passwords then dont remember them. (adds another 10-15-20 minutes to the call)