General discussion


More about wireless and "wardriving"

By geekchic ·
I set up a wireless connection in my home about a year ago. When I first set it up, I didn't really secure it in anyway and there were no other wireless connections in the area. But then someone else in the neighborhood set up a wireless system and I kept logging into it accidently. It was called 'linksys'. Then I locked down my system using MAC addresses. Next, MSHOME popped up and I could log into either one of them without any problem so I got kind of freaked out and locked down my wireless and it is now considered "secure" by most standards. Of course I realize that any self respecting hacker could get into it but at least no one in the neighborhood can use it easily.

Since the Christmas holidays began, I now have access to MSHOME, LINKSYS, KIRBYS AND LATTA. And ocassionaly one pops up called WORKGROUP.

Now for your opinion please, I know that I can find these homes pretty easily, do you think it would be a neighborly thing for me to approach these people and point out that they need to set up some kind of security for these systems? Or do you think that I would be opening a can of worms by offering this info??

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I am torn

by faradhi In reply to More about wireless and " ...

I have both of my neighbors have wireless networks. I felt that I should tell them. However, I also find that once someone knows that I am a computer administrator, they have a new best friend. Subsequently, I get few weekends to myself.

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by geekchic In reply to I am torn

that is what I am sort of worried about to. If I tell them about it, they might want help and that is ok but in the past, when I have helped people, they seem to forget that I have a life outside of work. Besides, some people I have talked to about it don't seem to think it is a problem if someone uses their wireless network....they don't think it is a big deal.

Thanks fo the response...I am still thinkin' about what to do!!!

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A suggestion...

by EMJ65 In reply to Yeah....

you can give them the information, but then point them straight back to their service provider for assistance. This is why home users who haven't a clue should not be using wireless!

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I keep hearing this

by jdclyde In reply to A suggestion...

are there places where a service provider will even TALK to you if you have ANY router between their "modem" and your computer?

All I can say, in Michigan they won't even START to talk to you until you connect your PC directly to the modem.

Home user shouldn't have wireless? Please state exactly why. As I said in my other post, they are threatened more from having ANY internet connection then they EVER will be from having an open access point. Or are you worried that grandma will lose some bandwidth?

Hype and fear factor to scare people into buying more and more security products and take more and more security classes.

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Nope. Check with manufacturer

by master3bs In reply to I keep hearing this

ISP's will not talk to you if you have a router hooked up, nor should they unless it is a router they provide. The tech support responsibility for that lies with the manufacturer of the router.

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Detroit has providers that will talk to you

by wojnar In reply to I keep hearing this

I am no longer living in the great state of Michigan (GO BLUE) but know of a number of Michigan/Detroit based ISP's who take pride in giving customer support beyond the modem.

I think the point of the previous post was that people are quick to latch onto new technology without finding out its proper use. People wouldn't take their brand new Mercedes and hook up a snow plow to the front bumper but I know of one person who tried to use a dialup connection to host a web server.

Most problems - including 99% of virus infections - could be prevented if people stopped assuming things or simply asked questions instead of thinking they know all about the technology because they stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night ...

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if they don't think it's a big deal

by jdclyde In reply to Yeah....

then it's not. the average home user is in more danger from the internet than they ever will be from an open access point.

Look at all the dial-up yahoos that don't even realize they still need a firewall. They are more likely to get wacked than the open access point.

Someone shares your bandwidth? Big whoop.

Now, if if is a business then it MIGHT not be so bad of an idea to secure it. They still have more to fear from the internet than they ever will from that access point.

Most of the hype about wireless security is just that, hype. It gets you to buy the latest wizbang to protect yourself because someone scared you real bad.

Secure the PC's first, then look at the wireless. True, some networks NEED higher security than others, and administrative servers should be segmented off anyways.

Vlans and access lists that only allow certain known people in. Just hysteria from there on.

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don't tell that to HIPAA

by wojnar In reply to if they don't think it's ...

The scare is a lot more than just hype. If you happen to connect to a medical facility's wireless and get caught, the facility gets a major fine and you could potentially be charged with a felony and get hefty fine.

Most users who had PC's involved with major hacking efforts - including national security - were only aware that their internet access sometimes slowed down. Time to take the heads out of the sand, stop saying 'it couldn't happen to me' and get people to secure their connections.

As my favorite poster says - No single raindrop ever thinks its responsible for the flood.

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by Choppit In reply to Yeah....

How about posting an anonymous postcard through their doors? You'll have alerted them to the problem and put a little mystery into their lives.

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Advice yes, free no.

by DC Guy In reply to More about wireless and " ...

Always be careful offering someone a free sample of your services. They may not understand that you're a professional giving them a taste of what you can do for them at your standard hourly rate. And methinks you don't quite understand that either. ^_^

Everyone has different marketing skills and standards, so there's no one-size-fits-all way to knock on your neighbor's door, tell him strangers are sharing his internet connection for free, make it clear that he's already used up his one free question, AND convey your level of interest in taking on paid gigs when you're not at the office.

But that is what you have to be prepared to do when you knock on that door, or it might very well turn out to be the lid on a can of worms.

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