Why protect wireless networks?
Wireless networks, which are sometimes known as Wi-Fi or 802.11 networks, let computers talk to one another using a radio link similar to cordless phones.
Like any radio transmission, anyone in range can pick up the signal or transmit on the same frequency. This means that wireless networks are at risk from:
- Eavesdropping – listening to the information as it is transmitted over the air. This means that information on the network must be encrypted
- Hacking – anyone in range can connect to the network. This means that the network must be restricted to known and trusted users and computers.
- Freeloading – where a wireless network is used to share a broadband internet connection, there is a risk that unauthorised users will use your connection without permission.
The problem is that most wireless network equipment, when it comes out of the box, is not protected against these threats in order to make it easy to set up. This means you have to configure the network yourself to make it secure.How to protect a wireless network
Although the Wi-Fi standard defines things like encryption and access control, the way you set them up varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. This means that the advice will seem a little technical because it is only possible to say what you have to do, not how you do it. Consequently, you will need to refer to the documentation that came with your hardware to set these defences up.Back <<