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How Playboy secures their wireless network

Dear Playboy Advisor: Questions from Men and Women to the Advice Column of Playboy Magazine

If you’ve read Playboy magazine over the years (and by “read”, we mean “flipped through the pages to the pictorials, occasionally check out the interview, read the Playboy Funnies, and check out a cartoon or two”), then you should be familiar with Chip Rowe and the rest of the Playboy Advisor staff of intelligent and well-read question-and-answer writers.

Sure, Web Watch could point you to any number of articles about how to secure your wireless router, but why should we do that when Playboy has summed up the steps to take in such an easy-to-understand manner and pleasant packaging?

R.L. from St Louis wrote to ask, “What is the best way to secure your router?”

The Playboy Advisor’s response?

  • Change the default password using the info in the manual to connect to the router’s control panel
  • Use a strong password.  (Web Watch readers should be well-versed in what we mean when we say to create a “strong password“, but Playboy recommends using at least 10 characters, not a word found in any dictionary, and a combination of upper- and lower-case, numbers, and symbols.)
  • Change the SSID name from the default to something that can’t be traced to you.  (If you have a smartphone or Wi-Fi-enabled computer, you may have even seen some of your neighbors’ network names.)
  • Disable WAN management and UPnP
  • Turn on WPA2-AES encryption — either personal or enterprise — and be sure to use a passkey for this that is at least 40 characters long — again, using a “strong password”

Playboy recommends checking out the Wi-Fi Router Security Checklist for more information, and we agree – there’s some good stuff there.

Web Watch wants to point out one important piece on their checklist:  avoid using WiFi at hotels or other public spaces if you’re trying to do anything that involves a username or password.  If all you’re doing is surfing Google and looking at Playboy?  that’s fine.  But anything that has you logging in anywhere?  Whenever possible in these locations, a VPN should always be used.

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