11-22-2004 wireless
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11-22-2004 wireless

11-22-2004 wireless

Have you installed a wireless network in your home? Are you aware of some of the common problems with wireless networks? The biggest thing that people overlook is security. Why do you need security? If your network is not secure, Joe Hacker, would be able to easily tap into your network to access the Internet or your computer.

You do have something in your favor. The range of wireless networks is very limited. The hacker would need to be next door or parked in front of your house. There is a new hobby, War Driving, where a participant drives around looking for wireless networks. War Driving is not a crime but a discovered unsecured network could be used to commit a crime. If a hacker used your network to launch a crime, your network would be the traced as the source of the problem. Would you like to be accused of a crime? There is even a variation on the hobby, War Flying. You can cover a lot of area from an airplane and find a lot of wireless networks. War flying on a commercial aircraft would be a "NO NO" but you could war fly in a private airplane. You don't need to be a computer expert or have any specialized equipment to war drive. All you need is a laptop computer and wireless network card. There are a few programs available to record wireless networks while you drive. Just start the program and drive. Some war drivers use a Global Positioning System, GPS, to mark the location of networks. The program is examined at the end of the drive for the location of networks that were discovered. What is so bad about letting people use your network? If everyone was a good citizen, it wouldn't be a problem but that is not the case. An unsecured network offers a spammer anonymous access the Internet but the spammers are being prosecuted under the Can-Spam Act. I recently had a conversation with someone who claimed to not be technically savvy. She regularly used a wireless network without permission from the owner. During more than one wireless network installation, I have found an unsecured network or two. Recently I was called to find out why a customer's wireless network had become slow. A network setting was mistakenly altered and the customer was inadvertently connecting to his neighbor's wireless network. In my neighborhood, my neighbors are pretty savvy. All the wireless networks are secure. People are entitled to their privacy. It might be easy to tap into your neighbor's network but it's not polite. If you are considering a wireless network, don't forget about security.


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NKC Systems Inc.

155 Broadway Rd ~ Suite 4

 Dracut, MA 01826


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