Wireless Slowdown When Security Enabled

Recently I noticed that there was wireless activity on my wireless router even when we had nothing powered up that could access it.  The obvious conclusion was the one of our neighbors was getting on the Inet using my router.  I truly didn't care until someone started downloading who knows what, I just know the it tied up huge amounts of bandwidth for hours and hours.  Of course, I'd turn the router off, and then back on, but the miscreant would return.

I enabled the lowest level of security that I could on the router----just a password required to log on.  This is working fine, but the speed has really suffered---it is now slower than dialup.  I had to mess with a bunch of cables to gain access administrative to the router.  Is this slowdown normal, should I be looking for a bad cable, or is there some particular security option that I should be using?  Belkin tech support (a guy named GEORGE in India) has been worthless all along.

Thanks in advance, Rick
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A slow down is expected anytime you encrypt traffic.  I am assuming you are using WEP 40Bit Encryption as the your security.  Yes there should be a slight slowdown, but nothing like you are describing.  Even at full encryption, your internet speed should not really suffer as your router is rated at a significantly higher speed then your connection.  I would reflash or flash your unit with the latest firmware, reset your router to factory, resetup the security and try again, failing that by a different brand of router, like a linksys or dlink.  Belkin are not mainstream producers of consumer grade network gear like Dlink, Linksys, and Netgear.

Good luck!.....:)

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