Everything which you could possibly do with your equipment after reading this post you do at your own risk. I am not responsible for any damage!
I will not expose which ISP is providing the internet access.
Here is the thing!
Some words about the ISP and home router set up.
The ISP cable modem router is Ubee EVW3226 DOCSIS Internet through Coax which also provides digital TV and landline telephone line. It is used only as coaxial to ethernet gateway. The x86 Atom based PC running pfSesne [FreeBSD] is doing all the work including enctyption and decryption, firewall and IPS. The ISP router's wifi is turned off completely.
Overall the system looks like:
<----LINK------->[ISP ROUTER Ubee DOCSIS]<---WAN--->[pfSense]<--LAN-->[SWITCH]|-->CLIENTS enc/dec |-->WIFI
A week ago or so, there was a thunder-storm with rain. Eventually, the another lightning strike made the lights off for a short period which has rebooted the ISP's router. I decided to check if the device is ok and logged into the router's admin panel. By the way the default password was 'admin' which I changed as soon as set everything up. Everything was fine except one thing. There was no longer available setub tabs with DMZ, other forwarding features and appeared a strange WIFI4ALL tab. By the way, before this like a month ago, I encoured some problems with WiFi signal strength. Some wired 'WIFI free' network was occupying the channel and the signal strength was like it is located somewhere inside the appartment. I used my TENMARS TM-190 (MULTI-FILED EMF METER) to measure the RF strength around the router and noticed that the ISP router is emmiting signal, but the WiFi was completely turned off. The reason why I did not check everything at that moment, I was busy preparing for the business trip. Returning to my story, this WIFI4ALL tab has no controls but information page about the WiFi network and amount of clients connected to this hotspot.
Oh really? I opened the ISP home page to find out what sort of cr@p it is. Seriously, I have never seen such things except the guest WiFi network.
Searching the web (Duckduckgoing) I found that this is allowes to:
Surf the net abroad free of charge and save on roaming costs (e.g. in the Netherlands, Ireland or Poland).
Do you have a tablet without a SIM card? With the Wi-Free homespots, you can also surf the net free of charge when you’re out and about. Mobile data exhausted or no mobile reception? Look for the closest homespot and continue surfing.
I don't want to have such feature in my router. The reasons for that are:
- Security and privacy: no one can give guarantee that this feature will not be used for the remote traffic sniffing or doing some illegal things
- Bandwidth: I want to decide on my own if I want to share the bandwidth with someone
- I am living on 5th floor. I don't think that the target audience has wings, jetpacks because this WiFi network can't be accessed outside without external antenna.
So, I can't turn it off without making intervention to the firmware or physicall disconnect off the antennas from transmitter. Ok, the firmware modification is not our case because the router's firmware is updated automatically and it will overwrite the configuration. Our method is to disconnect the antennas and isolate transmitter high frequency outputs.
The red circle is an radio outputs for the WiFi antennas. The outputs should also be isolated by installing dummy copper connectors on top of each. Otherwise it will be still exposed a little.
I am not greedy person, but when it comes to security and privacy, I am more than serious. I want to have full admin access on any ISP equipment installed in my premises/apartment and turn on or off any feature which I consider usefull and useless. I am not the only who are looking how to disable this thing. On the forums there can be found posts with questions about the WIFI4ALL in such routers and a similar to those post about how to disconnect/unplug the antenna connectors.