Internet: Connect to Wi-Fi using a QR code

By J. Carlton Collins, CPA

Q. I work in a training facility where our IT department insists on using difficult passwords to protect our Wi-Fi routers, and as a result, our many guests frequently have difficulty connecting. Any suggestions?

A. You might consider simplifying your Wi-Fi connection process by posting QR (quick response) codes that automate the Wi-Fi connection throughout your training facility. To do this, visit any one of many QR code creation websites. For example, ZXing's QR code generator can be accessed at, an example screen of which is pictured below.

Select the Wifi network option from the ­Contents dropdown menu, enter the SSID (service set identifier, aka the name of your Wi-Fi router), enter your Wi-Fi password in the Password textbox, select the Network Type (the type of encryption employed by your Wi-Fi router), and then click the Generate button.

These steps will generate a QR code like the one pictured below, which, when scanned, will automatically connect a guest to your Wi-Fi router. You could post this QR code as a wall hanging, print the QR code image on the student name tents, or perhaps include the image on the facility's coffee mugs. Using this approach, your IT staff can continue to employ difficult passwords for greater security, while your guests enjoy an easier Wi-Fi connection experience. (Caveat: Of course, this solution may require you to post instructions for downloading and using a QR code reader app; depending on their sophistication, your students and visitors may find this installation process more complicated than entering a difficult password.)


About the author

J. Carlton Collins ( is a technology consultant, a CPE instructor, and a JofA contributing editor.

Note: Instructions for Microsoft Office in “Technology Q&A” refer to the 2007 through 2016 versions, unless otherwise specified.

Submit a question

Do you have technology questions for this column? Or, after reading an answer, do you have a better solution? Send them to We regret being unable to individually answer all submitted questions.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.