Have you suspected someone of using your WiFi-connected without your permission?
Setting up a WiFi-connected has become so affordable that almost everyone has a WiFi router in their home. You can also use your mobile phone as an access point and browse the internet on other WiFi-enabled devices. But this convenience brings along with it a headache that almost everyone has suffered from in the past few years. Freeloaders are everywhere. Even your neighbor’s innocent-looking kid can manage to crack into your WiFi and use your connection. This post is going to teach you how to catch a freeloader and boot them off of your connection, forever.
Are there any tools I can use to check if someone is using my WiFi?
1. Check the router’s settings
Assuming you are using an internet connection provided by a cable operator, the easiest way to check if someone is using your WiFi is by simply check the MAC and IO address of the list of connected devices.
Windows PC users can log in to their router settings by first opening an internet browser and typing in their IP address(something like this http://126.96.36.199). This will show you a list of all the devices connected to your WiFi network. Plus, you also get to see their MAC address, current status, and Dynamic IP address. If this doesn’t work, simply open a command prompt and type in “ipconfig”. It performs the same function.
Mac users need to get their Router / Gateway IP Address by going to the settings app. Here, you will find a WiFi section where you can see a list of all the devices connected to your network.
2. Download and install a network scanner app
For the not-so-tech-savvy people, an easy way to check if someone is using your WiFi is to download a network scanner app on your phone(Important: it should be connected to your home WiFi network). There are tons of network scanner apps available for both Android and iOS devices. Let us first see how to perform a network scan on an Android phone.
For Android devices, I found “Who Use My WiFi?” app to be the best. It will show a list of all the devices connected to your WiFi network and also the locations of each user. To get started, just download and install the app by clicking here. Next, open the app and tap on the scan button. Wait for a second and it will show a list of all the devices connected to your home WiFi network along with their IP address and device manufacturer names. It is that easy.
The app for iOS works in the same manner. I recommend using an app called “Fing” to receive a notification on new devices and intruders. Plus, once connected, the app lets you monitor your home WiFi network from anywhere in the world. You can also find out who is at home.
How to stop a freeloader from using my WiFi? How to kick them off?
Now that you have found out who are the people using your WiFi-connected without your permission, it’s time to kick them off of the network. And you can accomplish this by downloading another app on your phone.
Android users can download and install a free app known as “WiFiKill” from the Google Play Store or by clicking here. Just tap open the app and press the scan button. It will scan all the devices using your WiFi and present them in the form of a list. With the help of the slider, you can enable or disable a device.
For iOS devices, Fing allows you to block the device if your choice. The reason I mentioned a different app for Android uses in this section, is because kicking off people from your WiFi network using an Android phone requires your device to be rooted. Rooting a device lets you have privileged control over various Android subsystems.