Questions

Is My Wireless Internet Being Stolen?

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Is My Wireless Internet Being Stolen?

sanks4545
I use Kismet to monitor my wireless networks and I noticed something weird last night...

I noticed that there were 5 clients listed on my wireless network, when I only have two computers that are connected to the internet! Does this mean that there is someone stealing my wireless?

Thanks!
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    patb071

    What kind of wireless security do you have in place? It is nothing for me to open my laptop up and connect to an unsecured wireless network.

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    1 Votes
    markp24

    Hi, if you look at your routers configuration page showing the other systems connected. confirm the MAC adress and computer names are not your computers. once you confirm that, you should secure your networks by at least using a WPA2 (AES) password, and if you want you can add mac address filtering to allow only your computers mac addresses a connection (this can be a pain if you have friends over , also you can spoof a mac address if you really want to, but it will prevent the basic users from connecting), and also tell the router not to broadcast the network name.
    Most current routers (netgear/Linksys/Cisco/Belkin, etc) have a Wizard that will setup you network with some basic security settings.

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    1 Votes
    OH Smeg

    Particularly if you have not changed the default settings in the Router/Modem.

    But do you have WiFi printers? They also count as a single connection.

    I would suggest opening the User Interface of the Modem/Router and setting it up. Ideally I would suggest using a CAT5 Connection to set it up as that is a permanent connection which makes setup easier.

    Just remember to change the Password and ideally the Default PassPhrase or whatever Security that you have in place. Of course if you have no security in place enable what you have available as not only do whoever have access to your ISP Connection but they also may have access to your Computers Data.

    Then there is the small matter of you owning that Internet Connection being responsible for what is downloaded over that connection. So if someone was to download some Kiddy Porn or bomb making directions you could have some very uncomfortable questions to answer from the Feds when they come knocking.

    I know here there are several Unsecured Connections which repairs constantly log onto when opened. The Note Books are a real nuisance as they will default to any available WiFi Network and disable the cable that I plug into them. Only way to prevent this with the new NB's is to kill the WiFi connection while I'm working with them as it's a pain starting a download and then coming back latter to see it not only still running but downloading slowly. Makes repairs take far longer than they should.

    Col

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    sanks4545

    Thanks for giving such in depth answers guys! And yes, I do have a WiFi printer, so that is most likely one of the unknown clients.

    When you guys started talking about routers, you opened a can of worms! I don't have a router, only a motorola cable modem that transmits the cable signal into a wireless one. Got rid of our routers when we went wireless.

    What does that mean for me? How do I kick these fools (if they actually are other people, I'm not sure yet, gotta find that out) off my network?

    Thanks

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    seanferd

    You treat it the same as you would a router. See the documentation for accessing the modem UI and configuring it.

    As to kicking fools off your connection, don't forget that since your WiFi is wide open, they may not even know they are connecting to your modem, so you cannot necessarily blame them any more than you can blame yourself.

    Now, if this is some sort of incredibly stupid modem that you cannot configure at all, do indeed throw a wireless router behind it and use that, turning off the wireless on the modem.

  • +
    0 Votes
    patb071

    What kind of wireless security do you have in place? It is nothing for me to open my laptop up and connect to an unsecured wireless network.

    +
    1 Votes
    markp24

    Hi, if you look at your routers configuration page showing the other systems connected. confirm the MAC adress and computer names are not your computers. once you confirm that, you should secure your networks by at least using a WPA2 (AES) password, and if you want you can add mac address filtering to allow only your computers mac addresses a connection (this can be a pain if you have friends over , also you can spoof a mac address if you really want to, but it will prevent the basic users from connecting), and also tell the router not to broadcast the network name.
    Most current routers (netgear/Linksys/Cisco/Belkin, etc) have a Wizard that will setup you network with some basic security settings.

    +
    1 Votes
    OH Smeg

    Particularly if you have not changed the default settings in the Router/Modem.

    But do you have WiFi printers? They also count as a single connection.

    I would suggest opening the User Interface of the Modem/Router and setting it up. Ideally I would suggest using a CAT5 Connection to set it up as that is a permanent connection which makes setup easier.

    Just remember to change the Password and ideally the Default PassPhrase or whatever Security that you have in place. Of course if you have no security in place enable what you have available as not only do whoever have access to your ISP Connection but they also may have access to your Computers Data.

    Then there is the small matter of you owning that Internet Connection being responsible for what is downloaded over that connection. So if someone was to download some Kiddy Porn or bomb making directions you could have some very uncomfortable questions to answer from the Feds when they come knocking.

    I know here there are several Unsecured Connections which repairs constantly log onto when opened. The Note Books are a real nuisance as they will default to any available WiFi Network and disable the cable that I plug into them. Only way to prevent this with the new NB's is to kill the WiFi connection while I'm working with them as it's a pain starting a download and then coming back latter to see it not only still running but downloading slowly. Makes repairs take far longer than they should.

    Col

    +
    0 Votes
    sanks4545

    Thanks for giving such in depth answers guys! And yes, I do have a WiFi printer, so that is most likely one of the unknown clients.

    When you guys started talking about routers, you opened a can of worms! I don't have a router, only a motorola cable modem that transmits the cable signal into a wireless one. Got rid of our routers when we went wireless.

    What does that mean for me? How do I kick these fools (if they actually are other people, I'm not sure yet, gotta find that out) off my network?

    Thanks

    +
    0 Votes
    seanferd

    You treat it the same as you would a router. See the documentation for accessing the modem UI and configuring it.

    As to kicking fools off your connection, don't forget that since your WiFi is wide open, they may not even know they are connecting to your modem, so you cannot necessarily blame them any more than you can blame yourself.

    Now, if this is some sort of incredibly stupid modem that you cannot configure at all, do indeed throw a wireless router behind it and use that, turning off the wireless on the modem.