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CNET News Video: Home Wi-Fi routers are easily hackable, says study

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CNET News Video: Home Wi-Fi routers are easily hackable, says study

1:44 /

Alarming news for those of us who use Wi-Fi in our homes or small businesses: a new study says Internet Wi-Fi routers are surprisingly easy to hack, leaving our personal and financial information exposed. CNET's Kara Tsuboi reports on what you can do to better protect yourself.

-Sheena Marks spends a good chunk of her day browsing the internet on her laptop at home. -I do pretty much everything. I listen to a lot of music, I e-mail, I chat with friends, I use different social networks like Facebook and Twitter. I am currently searching for a job, so that's a big resource for me. -But a new study from Independence Security Evaluators of Baltimore finds that major brands of home and small business WiFi routers are easily hackable forcing users like Sheena to take pause. -It's totally shocking. I feel like I'm protected at my home using a network that's password protected, a computer that's password protected, potentially having my entire life being looked at and being accessible by somebody else is scary. -When your router gets hacked, they're actually intercepting the signal before it gets to your computer so they can then have access to your computer. Any kind of financial information that you send or personal information that you send can be intercepted at that point. -Expert say there are few precautions users can take to better protect a WiFi network from hackers. -You can change your router password, you can look into changing your router username from Admin to something else. You can also look into changing your router's IP address. If you have passwords, make them strong. -The study's authors recommend router manufacturers take on the responsibility of fixing security issues and alerted all vendors. A spokesperson for Belkin, a major router vendor, says they are exploring ways to enhance their security and for concerned consumers to consult their website for safety test. In San Francisco, I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com for CBS News.

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