How to Change Your Wireless From WEP to WPA

By Kenneth W. Michael Wills

Encryption is your first line of defense on your wireless network. While it may prove harmless in most cases for someone to connect to an unsecured network and browse the Internet, not everyone has such innocent intentions. People exist who instead are exploiting that opportunity for personal gain at your expense. You have two encryption options, either WEP (Wireless Encryption Protocol) or WPA (Wireless Protected Access), with WPA being the most updated version offering the best protection for wireless routers. Keep in mind, if you have an older router, it may not support WPA, while newer routers will offer both options. While exact procedures may vary among routers, for the most part, changing from WEP to WPA follows the same patterns.

Things You'll Need

  • WPA enabled router
  • Ethernet cable

Step 1

Connect an Ethernet cable from your computer to one of the LAN ports on the back on your router. An Ethernet cable resembles a phone cord, but much thicker and hooks up just like a phone cable into a phone jack.

Step 2

Open your Web browser and type in http://192.618.1.1 or as the default address to connect to your router. Input your user name and password on the log-in screen. This is usually the default unless changed. If you are unsure of the default, you will need to contact the manufacturer of your router.

Step 3

Look for the option "Wireless Settings" on the menu once you log in and click it. Click on the option for "Wireless Network" and either type in the name of your network or click on the name, depending on your router's menu setup.

Step 4

Click on the "Security Options" menu and select the "WPA" option from the list provided. If you have WEP on your network already, you will find this option selected. You will simply change this option. Type in your desired password where requested on the screen and click on the "Apply" option to save your settings.