Wireless Network Attackers
War Driving Douglas Chick
hacking, or "Wardriving" is when someone from outside your home accesses
your wireless network. In most case it is because the victim doesn't have
security enabled on their wireless access point. The dangers of having a
non-secure wireless access-point are: Spammers can send junk mail from
your home, hackers and criminals can hack remote locations that are
tracked back to you, your confidential information is exposed to anyone
that parks outside your home with a laptop. You may also suffer some
liability because attacks were launched from your home by the bad guys.
Here is a video of Joe and I as we drove around the local new
station, showed them hundreds of open wireless networks in minutes.
Changing the default password is important because everyone that
purchases the same Wireless access device, knows your password.
2) Turn on (Compatible) WPA / WEP Encryption
By default, your Wireless device comes without the encryption
enables. WPA / WEP are security programs that forced your computer
to provide an encrypted password before you are allowed access to the
wireless access point.
3) Change the Default SSID
SSID is the network name of your wireless network; most people
leave the default name, such as, Linksys or NetGear. By changing the
name, intruders have a more difficult time identifying your system and use known
vulnerabilities. (And of course, use the unchanged default password.)
One mistake people make is naming their home network their family name
and or address. When cruising a neighborhood of wireless devices, its
always scary to see Smithfamily201Elm.
4) Disable SSID Broadcast
In Wi-Fi networking, the access point or router typically
broadcasts the network name (SSID) over the air at regular
intervals. This feature was designed for businesses and mobile
hotspots where Wi-Fi clients may come and go. In the home, this
feature is unnecessary, and it increases the likelihood an unwelcome
neighbor or hacker will try to log in to your home network.
5) Assign Static IP Addresses to Devices
Most home networkers gravitate toward using dynamic IP addresses.
This means that the IP Address, (the IP Address is needed to
participate on a network.) is typically assigned automatically. A
dynamic IP address on an unsecure system can also supply a hacker
with a IP Address.
6) Enable MAC Address Filtering
Each piece of Wi-Fi gear possesses a unique identifier called the
"physical address" or "MAC address." Access points and routers keep
track of the MAC addresses of all devices that connect to them. Many
such products offer the owner an option to key in the MAC addresses
of their home equipment that restricts the network to only allow
connections from those devices. Do this, but also know that the
feature is not so powerful as it may seem. Hacker software programs
can fake MAC addresses easily.
7) Turn Off the Network During Extended Periods of Non-Use
The ultimate in security measures for any wireless network is to
shut down, or turn office your wireless access point when you are
not using. You are the most vulnerable at work or asleep, and
mischief minded people know it.
8) Position the Router or Access Point Safely
Wi-Fi signals normally reach to the exterior of a home. A small
amount of "leakage" outdoors is not a problem, but the further this
signal reaches, the easier it is for others to detect and exploit.
Wi-Fi signals often reach across streets and through neighboring
homes. When installing a wireless home network, the position of the
access point or router determines it's reach. Try to position these
devices near the center of the home rather than near windows to
minimize this leakage.