Start Taking Your Wireless Network Security Seriously! Learn The Basics!

Saturday, June 21, 2014: Hackers are becoming more and more sophisticated each day and making use of some of the most thought-bred effective tools that guarantee complete attack and kill! While everyone can’t be a tech-buff so as to know all about protecting yourself, there are some basics that you should know so you don’t end up in trouble anytime soon.
Basic Terminology

1.Service Set Identifier (SSID)

Case sensitive, 32 alphanumeric character unique identifier attached to the header of packets sent over a wireless local-area network (WLAN) that acts as a password when a mobile device tries to connect to the basic service set (BSS); a component of the IEEE 802.11 WLAN architecture.

2.Wireless Access Point (WAP)

A wireless Access Point (AP) is a device that allows wireless devices to connect to a wired network using Wi-Fi, or related standards. The AP usually connects to a router (via a wired network) as a standalone device, but it can also be an integral component of the router itself.

3.Basic Service Set Identifier (BSSID)

A unique 48 bit key that forms the MAC address of WAP or wireless router.

4.Beacon frame

One of the management frames in IEEE 802.11 based WLANs that contains all the information about the network. Beacon frames are transmitted periodically to announce the presence of a Wireless LAN. Beacon frames are transmitted by the Access Point (AP) in an infrastructure BSS. In IBSS network beacon generation is distributed among the stations.

5.Wireless Equivalent Privacy (WEP)

An encryption scheme used to encrypt the WiFi data streams comprising of an encryption key and Initialisation Vector (IV). It uses a 64bit or 128bit key.

Securing Your Wireless Network

1.MAC filtering

MAC Filtering refers to a security access control method whereby the 48-bit address assigned to each network card is used to determine access to the network. MAC addresses are uniquely assigned to each card, so using MAC filtering on a network permits and denies network access to specific devices through the use of blacklists and whitelists.

2.Hiding SSID

Wireless devices can only connect to WAP via a known SSID. Therefore it’s ideal you hide SSID.

3.Encryption Keys

WEP is easily cracked within minutes even by the most mediocre of hackers out there. Those of you who were under the contention that WEP was really safe, well, think again! It is high time that you set your wireless routers up and change your wireless encryption from WEP to WPA2 security which is new and much stronger.

4.Intrusion detection system

Intrusion detection system (IDS) is a device or software application that monitors network or system activities for malicious activities or policy violations and produces reports to a management station. IDS come in a variety of “flavors” and approach the goal of detecting suspicious traffic in different ways.


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