Any wireless routers that are secure by default?
October 24, 2006 10:32 PM   Subscribe

Are there any wireless routers on the market that have security enabled by default?

I'm looking for specific examples of wireless routers with security enabled by default, meaning that when plugged in, they require that you configure the wep/wpa/whatever (or affirmatively disable security) before you can use the wireless network.

I understand that almost all are configured to operate in an open mode initially--I'm interested in the exceptions. I've found on Google references to broadband companies that issue to their customers wireless routers configured this way. Anyone have any more specifics?
posted by Brian James to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
If you're a big enough broadband company, and you're buying tens of thousands of routers, you can get custom firmware changes like this. They wouldn't be available to the public though.
posted by smackfu at 10:44 PM on October 24, 2006

What specifics do you want other than the names of the companies that preconfigure their routers? A google search turns up lots of ISPs that do this. (It seems most of the ones that do are from the UK).
posted by mphuie at 10:47 PM on October 24, 2006

Response by poster: I should have said that I'm primarily interested in broadband companies/manufacturers in the US that do this--but if you have info on such configurations in other countries, I'd like to hear about it.

Names of companies, model numbers of routers, or at least links to relevant articles would be great. (The search terms I came up with led to a lot of general material on wireless security.)
posted by Brian James at 10:58 PM on October 24, 2006

My neighbor's 2wire router came with security enabled, I believe. The password was printed on a label on the router.
posted by alexei at 1:32 AM on October 25, 2006

In the UK, both my BT (British Telecom) supplied routers have been WEP enabled by default. The first, Model 2091, came with a 128-bit key. My new one, the Home Hub, has a 64-bit key. Both had the key printed on a label on the bottom of the device. I was pleasantly surprised by this, as in almost every other way they're bog-awful devices.
posted by punilux at 3:03 AM on October 25, 2006

WEP was enabled by default on the 2wire unit provided by Sprint for my parents' DSL connection in central Virginia.

The WEP key is printed on the Serial Number sticker, and a hardware reset button will reset it to that key.

Now, whether in this day and age, we can consider 64-bit WEP to be secure, that's another question entirely.
posted by toxic at 3:15 AM on October 25, 2006

When I bought a D-Link router a while ago, the router wouldn't connect to the Internet without running through its wizard. In the wizard one of the steps had WEP enabled by default, so you'd need to specifically turn it off.

I don't know if it's such a great example product-wise, though, given that it'd routinely crap out completely and require a reboot when doing even light work.
posted by owenkun at 3:57 AM on October 25, 2006

My cheapo little netgear wireless router came with WEP enabled as the default. I think that's pretty par for the course these days. I changed it to WPA and only allow wireless access on a card-by-card basis, but it wasn't open to the world from the get-go at all.
posted by Aquaman at 9:39 AM on October 25, 2006

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