Hardening Your Home Router

Home Router Hardening

Hardening Your Home Router

Hardening your home router is a fairly straightforward thing to do. I will explain all the steps involved and walk you through the process.

So what is hardening? It is the process of securing your network so it is harder for the bad actors to get into it. Although all routers from ISPs are a bit different, they do have things in common. I am going to touch on the things that you need to do to make your router and therefore your network more secure.

First Step: Turn on your Firewall

There is a software firewall inside most routers that you simply have to turn on to gain more protection.  This protection helps you to stay safer.

Second Step: Check NAT Forwarding

There should be no holes in your firewall – if there are entries there you may have a problem. Check the port numbers on the internet to see what service it is running. If you don’t need it, get rid of the entry.

Third Step: Remote Management

Most of us do not have the need for having remote management and it is a big security hole. Someone could do all kinds of nasty things on our routers if they had the ability to reconfigure our home routers. My advice is: Turn it off.

Fourth Step: Change Usernames and Passwords

It almost goes without saying that the default passwords are weak and well known. A simple internet search will reveal that they are probably admin for the username and password (or blank) for the password. Change these immediately.

Fifth Step: Wireless Security

  • Rename the SSID (The Network name) – from the manufacturer, it is sometimes the model name, which makes it easier to hack because you know what to look up as far as vulnerabilities are concerned.
  • Use a strong Password – I know it is a pain to type all that in, but if it was easy you would be vulnerable.
  • Use your Guest Network – You don’t want guests in your home network looking through your personal papers. You can also put your IoT(Internet of Things) devices on this network.
  • Use WPA3 if it is available (WPA and WPA2 are retired)

Sixth Step: Update your firmware

Updating the firmware on a router usually just involves pushing a button and having the router reboot. You should check that there are no updates that you haven’t done every few months.


I hope that this has helped you gain more knowledge about hardening your home router. Following the steps I outlined will help protect your home network and bring you more peace of mind.

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Updated on January 31, 2022