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Wireless security

Wireless security is the prevention of unauthorized access or damage to computers or data using wireless networks, which include Wi-Fi networks (WLAN), NFC and ZigBee. The most common type is Wi-Fi security, which includes Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP, now deemed unsecure) and Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA, current standard WPA2 with 256-bit encryption).

Lacking wireless security in a local network, could expose personal computers and devices to a wide array of cyberattacks, from installing malware and spoofing websites to intercepting user credentials and system access. Furthermore, in an industrial setting, machine to machine communications can also be prone to exposure. Typical attacks include man-in-the-middle, MAC spoofing, rogue access points. Countermeasures against attacks on wireless networks include hiding the SSID (making the network invisible), RF or electromagnetic shielding, using a certificate-based system to authenticate the connecting device based on MAC-address (now deemed unsecure), use of security tokens (a form of two-factor authentication), static IP addressing, (end-to-end) encrypting communication, Wireless Intrusion Prevention Systems (WIPS) and Wireless Intrusion Detection Systems (WIDS).

Related keywords: router, modem, wireless signals, 80211X security, ad-hoc networks, peer-to-peer networks, Bluetooth network, network sniffing, Denial-of-Service attack (DoS), VPN, TKIP, EAP, RADIUS