How to Find Your Network Security Key
Your network security key is a unique preset password for connecting to your network. Most of these passwords are a randomly generated combination of words and digits, but they can be changed according to your preferences.
Without a network key, you will not be able to connect to your router. This means that you and everyone else will be unable to access the internet with this wireless network. If you’ve lost your security key or just can’t happen to find it on your brand new connection, read on to learn how to find it!
What is a network security key?
A network security key acts like a lock for your connection. It is important to have a secure lock to prevent intruders from breaking into your personal space. In the same way, a complex security key is important to keep others from compromising the security of your network. That’s why it’s best to keep your security key private from those you do not trust.
The default security key looks like a random sequence of numbers and letters because it is generated to be secure. Long, complex passwords are harder to guess than shorter, more relatable ones. However, since users normally just enter their security keys once or twice a year, it is common to forget the key.
Since a network security key can be so personal, creating a password that is easy for you to remember may be tempting. Most users pick the names of their pets or their favorite color with a combination of their favorite numbers. However, we recommend against this as it makes it easy for others to guess your password if they know you well enough, leaving your network insecure.
You might wonder, “How can I retrieve my network security key?” Don’t worry; you will get to know that later in this guide, but first, you should be aware of why you need the security key.
Why do you need network security?
Hackers find it challenging to access your system if you have a network security key. In order to protect your privacy, you have to secure your network first. And, in doing so, you’ll have to use a network security key that is not some generic number or name.
Advantages of using Network Security Keys
SSO (Single Sign-On)
A physical security key has the additional benefit of supporting Single Sign-On (SSO), Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), and occasionally even FIDO authentication standards, such as Universal Second Factor (U2F).
As employees deal with sensitive data relating to business and clients, many firms use security keys and eventually push their staff to use them. If this information leaks, the organization could suffer specific monetary and reputational repercussions.
Security from Phishing Attacks
Hackers have a hard time accessing password-protected accounts to obtain personal information. Network security keys are encrypted with specialized methods that are nearly hard to crack without the correct key, which is kept secret by network security key servers.
Network security keys can also be used in place of passwords, which are frequently used on several websites and are easily stolen from a single account to grant access to all of a person’s online data. According to the guide by Maryville University, network security keys also protect from numerous other cyber threats like Piggybacking and Wardriving.
How to find your WiFi’s network security key
If you’ve bought a new router, then you must be thinking about how to find the security key for your router.
You can easily find the security key either printed somewhere on the device or in the accompanying user’s manual. You can also access different settings in your device that will allow you to view your network security key.
Keep an eye out for anything that is labeled password (or key), wireless password, or WPA key.
How to find a network security key without an internet connection?
The first step is to check your router for clues to your security key. After this, you can use the network and settings options on your device to find the password.
If you’ve bought a new router, you can easily find the security key printed onto the device. Most usually, this is present at the bottom of the router or at the back of it. If it isn’t present there, it may be in the user’s manual or on the inside of the box.
Check out: Self made VPN router
How to find your network security key on different devices
No matter what device you use, knowing your security key is of the utmost importance because it guarantees your digital safety and security. If your network is left open to people, you don’t know or trust, your data and privacy could be compromised.
Make sure to take precautions for your digital well-being by viewing your network security key first, then making sure your key meets the standards for being complex and hard to hack.
How to Find network security key on Windows machines (Windows 7, 10, 11)
If your Windows device is connected to the Wi-Fi network that you’re trying to find the network security key of, follow these steps:
- Head over to ‘network connections from the start-up menu
- Go to the ‘network and sharing center’ from the search bar there
- In Wireless networks, click ‘Wireless Properties’.
- Head over to the Security Tab
- There, you will see the network security key hidden behind special characters. Just tap ‘show characters’ to view your security key.
How to Find network security key on Mac
If you have a Mac that’s connected to the Wi-Fi network that you’re looking to retrieve the key for, the steps are a little similar, like this:
- Search ‘keychain access’ in the search function
- In Keychain Access, look for your Wi-Fi network, then click on it
- Press ‘Show Password’ to view what the network security key is
- Lastly, enter the password of your Mac to confirm you have accessibility to view the private security key..
How to Find network security key on Android
These steps may vary slightly depending on which version of Android you’re using, as well as what device you’re using. However, these instructions will not be too different for an Android device:
- In the Settings app, head into your Connections.
- In the Wi-Fi tab from connections, select your current network.
- You will be presented with a QR code.
- Scan this QR code to gain access to your network security key.
How to Find network security key on iOS
These steps may be a little different depending on the version of iOS that you are using, but they generally apply to all iOS devices:
- In the Settings app, access the Wi-Fi tab.
- Press the ‘i’ (information) icon that appears next to the title of your network.
- From there, you will see your router’s IP address. Copy that.
- Paste your router’s IP address into your browser’s URL/search bar.
- Enter your router’s login details to gain access to the network security key.
How do I protect my password?
If you’re still using the default password that came packaged with the router, you’re very likely to forget it because it’s just a string of characters. It isn’t easy to remember random sequences of letters, so you may wish to change the network security key by yourself.
Changing your password is an easy task, and it’s recommended that you change your password at least a few times a year. This is to safeguard your own privacy and security, and so that your connection is never compromised. Keeping your personal network protected can prevent a number of privacy-related violations, such as hacks and tracking, so make sure to cycle out your passwords frequently.
How do I create a strong password?
It’s best to create a password that you don’t already use for your network security key, so that there are minimal chances of anyone joining your network. You should also use a combination of capital letters, lowercase letters, special characters, and even numbers. Try to make sure that whatever password you’re creating is not only unique but also hard to guess.
A strong, complex password is typically 12 or more characters long and contains special characters. It’s important that your security key doesn’t have any bits of personal information, such as your birthday or your name, since that can be easily guessed by others looking to prey on your network connection.
Author: Arsalan Rathore
Arsalan Rathore is a tech geek who loves to pen down his thoughts and views on cybersecurity, technology innovation, entertainment, and social issues. He likes sharing his thoughts about the emerging tech trends in the market and also loves discussing online privacy issues.