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Use the strongest network encryption compatible with your network devices

Verizon ships its FiOS Internet routers with WEP as the default encryption. While WEP is useful for preventing unintentional connections to your wireless home network and offers virtually universal compatibility with wireless network devices, it does not protect networks against a determined hacker. Other encryption standards, such as WPA and WPA2 are more secure and offer greater protection against hacking and security breaches. However, WPA and WPA2 may have compatibility issues with older types of wireless equipment.

WPA2 should be your first choice for network encryption if your wireless gateway, network computers, and devices support it. WPA2 is the newest and strongest of the 3 commonly-used encryption types, but it is also less compatible with older Operating Systems; especially those prior to Windows XP with Service Pack 2. Older network equipment like USB network adapters or network interface cards (NICs) may also be incompatible with WPA2. You may also experience compatibility issues with some network products such as Xbox and Wii when using WPA2.

If you discover you have compatibility issues with WPA2, your next choice should be WPA encryption. It is stronger than WEP, but shares some of the same incompatibilities with WPA2 for older Operating Systems, network equipment, and computing products.

WEP encryption may discourage your neighbor from stealing your wireless Internet access, but WPA or WPA2 encryption provide stronger protection against a hacker who is actively seeking to attack your wireless network.
 





See also: What compatibility issues should I consider before using WPA2 or WPA encryption?
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