Back to me favourite subject-wireless. Sad that I am, I’m on a quest. I’m going to put a page up on the website explaining how it’s done but the blog seems a quick and easy way to talk about. I’ve set up an aerial in the car, attached to a Alpha USB wireless adaptor and hooked it all up to an old Compaq with XP on it. All feeding into a little app called Wi-Fi hopper which detects and logs Access points (AP’s). It doesn’t do any connecting in my set-up (although it can), but it details nicely AP’s. Stick it in the boot, put it on auto-save and away you go. Which leads nicely onto the next point…

I wanted to find out (approximately) how many people in my area, and a bit further afield, were using open and more importantly, WEP . Here’s my theory-WEP, which is security on wireless routers, is more dangerous than an open (no encryption) router.If it’s open, the you can take precautions .If you have WEP, then you have a false sense of security. So far (13th Sep), I’ve detailed just under 3,000 AP’s! Breakdown is roughly 30% Open, 35% WEP and 35% WPA/WPA2. Surprised-I’m not. I’ve mentioned Aircrack before (WEP key cracking tool) but some bright spark has built a VM ware image-so now it’s plug and play.With the above bits of hardware, you simply download and install VM player on your XP machine ,load up the image and away you go. 5 mins for 64 bits encryption and 20 mins for 128 bits (all on my own wireless AP of course). Da-dah-encryption key is found. Then it’s simply a matter of going back into XP, use the Windows supplied wireless software and connect to the router using the said found key.

The really interesting (or dangerous) point is the amount of business’s that have a WEP configured router-it’s one thing to let someone use your bandwidth-it’s another if someone decides to hack into your network and delete your last year’s accounts. My question is-how do you let them know to tell them how to fix it?

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