I want to establish a paid public WiFi system. Here is my model of how it will work:

I will install a public WiFi in my apartment. Using the WiFi system is paid but, voluntary. Those who pay me a monthly cost will be able to access the WiFi. Those who don't pay cannot access the Wifi. Now, I cannot set one password and provide it only to those people who pay money as there is always a chance that the password will leak out to others who have not paid.

So, what is a solid security system so that only who have paid money can access the WiFi?

  • Something like that ? I have no ties with such companies, nor am I to provide any advices such as use or do not use it, nor do I know whether it is secure or not
    – Biv
    May 27, 2016 at 8:27
  • 5
    This should be in Security.SE, but look into WPA2 Entreprise, with an authentication backend such as Radius. Basically, each user has his or her own username/password, which you can provide upon payment, and revoke at the end of the subscription period.
    – fkraiem
    May 27, 2016 at 8:28
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    Also make sure you are actually allowed to do this if you rent the apartment, it may be that your tenancy agreement forbids you offering a paid service in your apartment (which is probably not zoned for business to begin with).
    – Thomas
    May 27, 2016 at 8:37
  • WPA2-Enterprise with EAP is the correct way to go. Also make sure to put each customer in their own VLAN so they can't interfere with other customer's traffic. May 27, 2016 at 11:48
  • 1
    This seems like a product recommendation question to me. Most hotels have systems like that. Hotel owners are rarely very IT-savvy, so I am quite sure they are using off-the-shelf solutions.
    – Philipp
    Jul 18, 2016 at 14:56

1 Answer 1


You should use WPA2-Enterprise, it allows you to issue per-user credentials that can be revoked at will, in addition to using unique keys for each user (so you can't decrypt someone else's wireless traffic even if you are allowed to access the network, something possible with WPA2-Personal where the key is the same for everyone).

You'll need a RADIUS server which will handle authentication attempts (every time someone associates with the AP, it relays the authentication information to the RADIUS which decides whether to accept or decline the request). This server keeps (hashed) credentials in a database and you can add and remove them at will, possibly automatically by using a payment gateway. You can even serve a second, open Wi-Fi network which only allows access to your signup page (over HTTPS) so people can sign up and pay for your network by themselves without asking you. Once they paid their credentials are added to the database and they can connect to the secure network.

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