Did you know that your old router can be a gold mine for hackers? If you don’t erase your personal data before disposing of it, you could expose yourself to a number of problems, including identity theft, fraud and cyberattacks.
Many people may not know how to properly erase and reset your router because we rarely adjust the settings once it is installed. That’s why we’ve prepared some simple steps to follow before you throw away your old router for good.
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What exactly does resetting your router do?
Resetting your router before you get rid of it means restoring it to its factory settings, which erases any changes you’ve made to its configuration. This includes data that thieves find valuable, like your username and password, Wi-Fi settings, and more. It’s important to reset your router before disposing of it, otherwise someone could access your personal information just by looking at the router’s memory.
A router’s memory can store different types of information, such as the router’s operating system, configuration files, passwords, and Internet history. Some of this information is sensitive and personal and could be used by a hacker to gain access to your network, devices or online accounts.
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Restart or reset your router
Rebooting and resetting your router are two different things. When you restart your router, you simply turn it off and on again without changing any of your settings. This can help fix Wi-Fi issues, such as slow speed or poor performance, by clearing its memory and refreshing its connection.
On the other hand, resetting your router is a more drastic and permanent action that should be done before you get rid of your router. Resetting your router means restoring it to its factory settings, which erases any changes you made to its configuration.
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This includes your username and password, your Wii network name and password, your security settings, and any other settings you may have customized on your router, such as port forwarding, firewall, parental controls and guest network.
After resetting your router, you will need to reconfigure your network from scratch.
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What are the risks if I don’t reset my router?
If you don’t reset your router, you risk hackers finding out who you are and what specific network configurations you’re using, which should be private.
This can allow the hacker to gain full access to your private information, such as your name, password, as well as login credentials, and use it for malicious purposes, such as selling it on the dark web , keep them for ransom or something else. to cause a technical headache.
You wouldn’t want a hacker to obtain information on one of your private devices like your cell phone or laptop, so you should apply the same rule for your router.
Steps to Take Before Getting Rid of Your Old Router
- Backup your settings and Passwords. You might need it for your new router or for troubleshooting purposes.
- Disconnect your router from the Internet and a power source.
- Reset your router to factory settings. This will erase all your personal data and settings from the router’s memory.
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- Withdraw any stickers or labels bearing your network name, password or serial number.
- Recycle or donate the responsibility of your router. Check with your local authorities or organizations about the best way to dispose of e-waste. Many electronics stores and other organizations offer recycling or donation programs at no cost to you. THE Environmental Protection Agency has a list of donation and recycling programs. You might also consider, Declutterwhich is one of the easiest and fastest ways to sell used technology.
How do I reset my router?
Note: These instructions may vary depending on the model of router you have. Refer to your router manual or an online support guide for further instructions. Simply do a Google search for the make and model of your router with the word “reset.”
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Here’s how a common router reset works:
- Make sure your router is plugged in and turned on
- Find it reset button
- Insert a paper clip into the hole if prompted. hold the button down for at least 15 seconds
- Release the button and wait for your router to turn back on
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Kurt’s Key Takeaways
Resetting your router is essential before you get rid of it. By doing so, you can protect your personal data and prevent hackers from gaining access to your network and devices.
The good thing is that resetting your router is a simple and easy process that only takes a few minutes. It can also save you a lot of trouble in the future.
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Remember to back up your settings and passwords, disconnect your router, reset it to factory settings, remove all identification labels, and recycle or give responsibility for it. Have you encountered any security issues related to your electronic devices in the past? Let us know by writing to us at Cyberguy.com/Contact.
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