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Watched a news show about hacking...

By PHATMAN5050 ยท 14 replies
Nov 21, 2002
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  1. So apparently 'Dave Balcar' who makes home networks was talking about 'drive by hackers' who have laptops and drive by houses with wireless networks and just by connecting they get access to all the files on the other computers. Does this not make sense to anyone else? First off, they would have to find a network in which the computers on the network would have to have shared files and having all of the 'confidential information' placed in these shared files. Give me a break! Oh, they also showed someone who drove down some street in Texas where they have a lot of offices and apparently he got a total of 134 wireless networks and 70 of them were insecure. Are you kidding me? 134! I have a home network in my house that is 2.4ghz/5ghz and there is no WAY IN HELL it would reach half as far as it would have to that this guy is talkin about. How are there that many wireless networks without any interference. There are only a handful of channels that the wireless devices could use, and if he picked up 134 on one street, that would mean that ever 6 of these networks would be on the same connection as another. I hope Dave is a member of this forum so i could have a lil talk with him about computer technology and wireless networking. Also, another person said that 'all one has to do to make their wireless network secure is flip a couple of switches and its safe.' Yeah ok, sir, you can show me which SWITCHES i have to FLIP to make my wireless connection secure, what a *****! You have to go into the firmware and set in the encryption, yeah, that's almost like flipping a switch. :evil: Why is it that i see the biggest morons talking about computers on tv.
  2. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,726   +378

    Maybe the switches were metaphorical?

    If they are using 802.11a then that takes care of possible interference from other devices...

    So only one of these wireless networks could be using all of the channels in theory, so wouldn't this, as you say, limit the number of networks that could operate in one area?

  3. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Phat> The WLAN can actually reach those lengths... Especially if the company has accesspoints on each floor, close by windows etc...
    And besides, most companies use more heavyduty senders/recievers than most ppl do in their homes...

    I can go down to a beach in the summer with a laptop and a wlan card, and get access to inet and a company land... (or at least i could have done it this summer if I had a laptop and wlan card.... I guess they've fixed it now...)
  4. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    We had a serios scandal here a while ago. In a computer show on TV they just drove around the city and got access to different companies, including government institutions. Nobady had bothered securing the access points, they were treated just like any other LAN switch/router inside the building..
  5. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,704

    Tsssss...no, impossible, all mainstream wireless networks have a unique WEP security code to prevent this exact thing from happening.
  6. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    I read an Article a year or so ago about a guy who did the same thing. From what I read, the device he used was built from a modified police scanner. He just drove around seeing how many networks he could access and how difficult it was. He seemed to have little trouble and was not even noticed on any of the networks.

    Veh, don't say it isn't possible. Anything is possible when dealing with electronic devices.

    The two most important things to remember is there is no "Never" or Always" when dealing with Electronic devices.
  7. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    True. Quite frankly, I find some of the things I have read and heard about over the years truly terrifying....
  8. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    The devices may have an unique security code, but when checking/validating the code isn't turned on, averybody can access the network. Simple as that. It's such a fuss to register every employee's wireless card..
  9. Tweakster

    Tweakster TS Enthusiast Posts: 199

    For people in the know around there are special markings and paswords sprayed on walls around london which show the local wireless networks usually hosted by companys. U probably wouldnt notice them unless u look about but there usually sprayed on wall squares and contain numbers (cant remember what numbers are).
  10. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,704

    Heh, that's actually funny Tweakster...

    Any half-wit network admin would surely include validation, and a whitelist of accepted computers on the main server...right??

    Of course, then you could hack that, but that would be a little difficult.
  11. Elcarion

    Elcarion TechSpot Paladin Posts: 169

    WEP is not secure. Theoretically it can be broken in 5-20 minutes depending on how much traffic is on the network and how good of a signal you have. Personally, I've only cracked one WEP key while evaluating wireless networks at work. It took a whopping 38 seconds to crack a 40-bit WEP key. Unless you're running WEP with TKIP, EAP, VPN, or something else in addition to WEP then it's not secure.
  12. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    They're popping up all over the world AFAIK... Read an aritcle about it in a Norwegian newspaper some time ago...

    But it isn't limited to company wlans... Anyone who's got xDSL and a wlan setup is welcomed to add the tag on th street... The point is to supply free inet connections to as many ppl as possible...
  13. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,704

    Ouch. It's worse than I thought it was then. Very interesting, especially since I was thinking of setting up a mini-WLAN at my house. Now I won't :)
    It's too expensive anyway.
  14. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Veh> It's up to you if you want to mark your LAN or not... And if you implement some encryption, you should be safe from most ppl...
  15. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    Concur, it just takes a little research and taking the time to set things up properly, without skipping any steps.

    As long as you are worried about it, that means you will secure it as best you can, which is a good thing.

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