Feeds

Secure the Wireless Network firmware

Intel WEP Schlep

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Intel Developer Forum Security issues surrounding wireless networking can be addressed without upgrading hardware, Intel said today.

The future ubiquity of wireless networking has been a key theme of the IDF this week, with much talk of a mobile computing future where laptop computers automatically select the best connection via either a wireless LAN or high-speed mobile network.

This is an attractive vision but there's serious concerns that recently released tools, such as Airsnort, will expose the insecurity of wireless networks, particularly since the security of installed networks has repeatedly been described to us as "flaky".

Encryption experts, among them Adi Shamir, the co-inventor of RSA, have highlighted cryptographic weaknesses in the WEP (Wired Equivalent Protocol) security that ships with 802.11b. Best practice calls for the use of virtual private networking techniques to encrypt data flowing over wireless Lans but this is often not followed.

Carol Jacobson, manager of Intel's wireless initiative, said weaknesses in WEP can be addressed by upgrading the firmware on existing kit and won't entail a forklift upgrade of kit (just better key management technology).

The next generation 802.11i standard for wireless networking will provide a long-term solution, she added.

Another concern raised during a panel on client initiatives at IDF was fears about interference arising from the number of different technologies using the 2.4GHz band. Bluetooth devices, 802.11b wireless networking kit, some US mobile operators and even devices from Radio Shack designed to pipe TV signals through the home use the over-occupied band.

According to Jackson, Bluetooth devices and 802.11b wireless equipment do not interfere with each other in airport environments and the like, where their use is emerging. However she admitted a few devices in the IDF technology showcase had "stepped on each other". Hmmm.®

Related IDF Stories

Intel goes bananas over Banias
2GHz P4 will turn us all into DJs
Wintel touts the next leap in computing
Project Jackson breaks cover - Xeon in 2002, Itanic later
McKinley, Deerfield speeds and feeds

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft: We plan to CLEAN UP this here Windows Store town
Paid-for apps that provide free downloads? Really
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Hear ye, young cyber warriors of the realm: GCHQ wants you
Get involved, get a job and then never discuss work ever again
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?