Can I press the WPS button on the router? And what happens if you do this?
If you've ever looked closely at your router, you've probably noticed a strange button labeled "WPS". But what is this mysterious button and what happens if you click on it?
Let's see what "WPS" means, why it is needed and how it works.
What is WPS
WPS stands for " Wi-Fi Protected Setup", and the main goal of this standard is to simplify the process of setting up a wireless network.
If you've connected any device to your router before, you probably remember how awful it is to enter the default password that looks like some kind of spell.
Manufacturers usually put the password somewhere on the back of the router, and it consists of random letters, numbers and symbols that must be entered to connect to the wireless network.
The default password is very complex to prevent hackers and other intruders from breaking into the device. For example, if the password is changed to something simple, such as "admin", then a hacker (and not only) can easily recognize it and gain access to the router. Previously, when passwords were generated by default, it was always recommended to change it to protect the network.
Because complex router passwords are pretty strong, many people prefer never to change them. Thus, someone can access your Wi-Fi only if they read the password on the back of the device.
Many people have a question: is there an easier way to share Wi-Fi access with other users? That's what the WPS button is for!
How it works
How the WPS button works is that if someone is in range of the router, then this user is allowed to connect his device to the router. Thus, instead of entering a long password, you can simply click on the button and connect the desired device.
When you press the button, the router starts searching for compatible devices. If it detects a gadget that is also looking for a WPS-enabled router, then the connection will occur automatically. If nothing connects for about two minutes, the router will stop searching.
Please note that not all devices can connect using WPS. All gadgets released before the appearance of this feature are not compatible with it, and manufacturers of some new devices deliberately refuse to support WPS at all.
If the device is WPS compliant, you will see the "connect via WPS" option when connecting to a new router.
Where is WPS on the router?
The WPS button differs depending on the specific router model. On some routers, it is easily visible: just look for the "WPS" sign. Most often it is located on the back of the device.
On some models, you will see the WPS symbol, which looks like two arrows pointing at each other:
On other models simply write the full abbreviation "Wi-Fi Protected Setup" next to the button. All of the above should still work like a regular WPS button, so don't worry if your router's labeling is different.
How to connect to Wi-Fi via WPS
Unfortunately, not all Wi-Fi devices work with WPS. As we mentioned earlier, older systems developed before this feature was not compatible with it.
You can find out if the device is compatible with WPS during the device connection process - the corresponding option will appear in the settings. After you select the network to which you want to connect the device, you will be asked to enter a password or press the WPS button on the router.
If this option does appear, do not close the window and press the WPS button on the router itself. The router will then start searching for devices that want to connect to it. Thus, you will connect to Wi-Fi without a password.
It is worth noting that when the password of the router is changed, all devices connected to it via WPS will be disconnected. If you try to reconnect, the device will say that the entered data is incorrect.
To solve this problem, go to the settings of your smartphone (other devices previously connected to Wi-Fi) and click on "Forget network", and then reconnect to it using WPS.
This feature is quite useful: if you suspect that someone has connected to your router using WPS without your knowledge, then just change the password, this will block everyone who is connected.
Is it safe?
The security of using WPS depends entirely on where the router is located. Do you think that any intruder can access your router and use WPS to enter your network? In this case, open the router settings and disable this feature.
In general, we do not recommend enabling WPS all the time, as it is only useful when connecting new devices. Once you're done, there's no reason to leave the feature enabled.
But what about guests? If you want your friends to be able to connect to Wi-Fi quickly and easily, you can set up a separate guest network for them. This way, they can quickly connect to the Internet while keeping all your personal devices safe.
WPS is a convenient and practical way to connect your devices to your router, but this feature may come with some security risks.
After connecting all the necessary equipment, we recommend disabling the WPS function and allowing guests to connect through the guest network so that all personal devices remain secure.