Wi-Fi remains a work in progress

Wednesday, 21 January 2004, 12:41 AM EST

While Microsoft has caught considerable grief over Windows network security holes, it is not alone in what seems to be an industry-wide practice of leaving security features turned-off by default. Wi-Fi vendors also ship their equipment with simple default settings and without activating security enhancements, which could be especially problematic for enterprises and public-safety organizations.

The Black Hat Federal Briefings held in Washington, D.C., in September 2003, focused on the security weaknesses of 2.4 GHz networks. It's a fairly simple matter for hackers to crack the wired equivalent privacy (WEP) security protocol, spoof Internet protocol addresses and forge media access control (MAC) addresses, according to Don Bailey, principal of security consultancy The Shmoo Group, who spoke at the conference. Additionally, 2.4 GHz networks legally can be jammed.

By Doug Mohney at NewsFactor.

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