Wireless isolation imposes strict limits and restrictions on users connected to a Wi-Fi network. Users under this limitation are unable to connect to devices secured on wired networks or communicate with other users on the same network. A computer that is connected under wireless isolation is only able to access the Internet and is not considered part of a local network by the router.
Wireless isolation features are not on by default on most standard wireless routers. In a wireless home router, every device connected to the wireless network is automatically considered part of a local network. This allows each device to communicate and potentially access data over the unsecured wireless network. This type of open device communication can be a potential security risk for a business.
A business offering free public Wi-Fi, for example, might choose to utilize wireless isolation to stop customers on the wireless network from accessing crucial business devices. Without wireless isolation, a device with a virus or malware could easily spread the infection to other systems on the network. This may include systems that contain important business data or general customer records. The same protection can also be used at home to mitigate any potential damage from infected electronic devices brought by visiting guests.