Wifi Courtesy Cards

28 September 2008
2:38 AM

Wireless networks are everywhere these days. So common, in fact, that my uncle thought that “linksys” was some kind of national wireless network—“There’s one everywhere I go!” I just got my internet connection working and I expanded the wireless net with a new Linksys router. The question: to secure it or not?

My friend Chris read in an etiquette column that an open wireless network is preferable so that your house guests can connect to your network easily and use your connection. From a convenience standpoint it makes sense. You won’t always be around to help your guest use your connection. On the other hand, it might be a discourtesy to let your guests’ sensitive traffic fly around unencrypted, not to mention your data whenever you don’t have guests. It’s a good idea to secure your wireless network to keep your data private. But how to handle visitors?

My solution is wifi courtesy cards: business cards that you make available in your house to help guests connect to your network.

Sample Wifi Courtesy Card

Pick up a package of Avery 8871 business cards (or equivalent!) and print out a sheet of these cards to keep around for your next visitors. Then when you change your router’s password you can just print out a new sheet of cards. Here’s a starter kit to get you going. It includes the template as a Word document and InDesign CS3 document, plus the wireless EPS logo that I modeled after Apple’s Airport menu.