Security questions

By Machinist
Sep 25, 2007
  1. Hi all, I finally set up my Linksys WRT54GS and Lynksys WUSB54GS adapter. I had to call tech support to get the pc on the usb adapter working. The tech had me set up WEP 64bit security. Is this secure enough for a home network. Both pc's are XP and are running pc-cillin anti virus and zone alarm firewall. Naturally I would like to have the network as secure as possible, but if I start changing security types will I have to reconfigure the router and usb connection settings so they will still communicate with each other? Im a total noob to networking

  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    WEP is virtually no security. The 64 (40) bit version can be cracked in a matter of seconds. It is the most compatible flavour of wifi encryption though.

    You have to change the encryption method on the router and maybe on your computer (depends on what program you use to connct to your wireless). You want to use WPA2 or at least WPA with a strong password for a secure network.
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 11,173   +989

    a matter of degree ...

    The technical differences between WEP and WPA/WPA2 are significant and
    academically, WEP is easily broken.

    HOWEVER, it takes some know-how and persistence to crack-the-code.
    Someone who has never done it will take a while. Someone that knows how
    and is experienced in WAR DRIVING will do it less than a minute.

    The question becomes, "What is your exposure and what damage/loss might occur"?

    Exposure: proximity to nearby heavily travelled streets OR a nasty neighbor

    Damage/Loss: what files might cause you real pain if compromised.

    FYI: with a properly configured firewall, access to your network/internet connection does not necessarily mean your systems will be compromised!
  4. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    If someone cracks your wireless, they can eavesdrop on your internet traffic (if you use the internet over wifi).

    Most of the internet is transparent. Every website you visit or server you use can be seen, most website passwords and usernames can be read, most e-mail you move can be read, most chats can be read, most website content can be read pretty much every file you download can be recognised..
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