Secure access to church WiFi

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  1. Posts : 229
    Windows 10
       #1

    Secure access to church WiFi


    I have setup a WiFi network in our local church, mainly to provide on-line access to Hive heating. Much easier to set times from home than have to go down to program church and hall heating as needed.
    We are now being asked to grant access by various people - all for good reason. But I know what people are like with passwords - half the congregation now seem to know the codes to the door lock and alarm!

    Can someone point me to a simple (and cheap!) way of setting up limited and restricted access please?
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  2. Posts : 4,556
    Windows 11 Pro 64-bit
       #2

    You can give access to MAC address for the network card connected to computer.

    How to configure Wireless MAC address filter on wireless router? | TP-Link
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  3. Posts : 27,243
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #3

    You have to configure separate network for other users (guest network - Lifewire), and only trusted should have access to the same network as you.

    What router do you use?
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  4. Posts : 17,373
    Windows 11 Pro
       #4

    Sigurd said:
    But I know what people are like with passwords - half the congregation now seem to know the codes to the door lock and alarm!

    Can someone point me to a simple (and cheap!) way of setting up limited and restricted access please?
    How did simply giving them access to WiFi also give them codes to unlock the door and alarm?

    Anyway, on my router there is a setting in the guest network setup which limits those connected to guest WiFi to only accessing the internet, and nothing on the local network. Sounds like what you want to do is create a guest WiFi connection then make sure the option to access local network and other devices on the network is NOT checked:

    Secure access to church WiFi-capture.jpg
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  5. Posts : 229
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #5

    Thank you all for the help. Will see what i can do.

    Re alarm and door codes - nothing to do with WiFi! Just illustrating how codes get passed around.

    The router is the standard one supplied by British Telecom. Following the principle that "if it works don,t fix it" I have kept out of settings. However I do have the required access so can see what is available re guest accounts.

    I appreciate why people have assumed we want to keep guests out of the local network. Normally that would be an issue but in this case the WiFi network is needed for access to the internet. There is nothing of consequence on the LAN. The main thing is the access to heating controls via internet and that is password protected anyway.
    I think the concern is that if the access to the internet is uncontrolled (due to passwords being shared) then the access could be abused.

    From what has been suggested the answer may be to change the password regularly and perhaps use one of the child protection routines to control the level of access. Don't know much about them as my children flew the nest before the internet was invented!
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  6. Posts : 1,806
    Windows 10 Pro 21H1 19043.1348
       #6

    Sigurd said:
    From what has been suggested the answer may be to change the password regularly and perhaps use one of the child protection routines to control the level of access. Don't know much about them as my children flew the nest before the internet was invented!
    If you grant access to the wifi using mac addresses, there will be no sharing unless they get a bit crafty. It should keep most out.
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  7. Posts : 1,620
    Windows 10 Home
       #7

    Does the congregation use the church WIFI to stream services and look up things during Sunday services and during the day?
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  8. Posts : 229
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #8

    W10 Tweaker said:
    If you grant access to the wifi using mac addresses, there will be no sharing unless they get a bit crafty. It should keep most out.
    That may be the best way forward. If I understand this correctly this is authorising access to machines, not to people. I setup the router to only allow specific machines to have access.

    Another way that has just occurred to me is to tell anyone that wants access that I need to logon for them and set their PC to remember it. That way they can't pass on the password even if they want to.

    I honestly don't think it is a huge problem given the handful of people who would need access, certainly not all the congregation as Roland asks in his response to this thread. However one official has had a bad experience in a previous church with IT and is a bit (healthily) paranoid so may want tighter control.
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  9. Posts : 25,115
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #9

    Sigurd said:
    Another way that has just occurred to me is to tell anyone that wants access that I need to logon for them and set their PC to remember it. That way they can't pass on the password even if they want to....

    Let's hope they don't read Ten Forums....

    See Wireless Network Security Key Password in Windows 10
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  10. Posts : 229
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #10

    That's handy! The vicar wants the password to the hall WiFi extension and I can't remember the password for the repeater! I thought I was going to have to reset the repeater.

    Thank you all for your help.
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