WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

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I'm switching to Windows 7 on my new laptop and I wonder if there are
WiFi issues I should be aware of.  I normally have this machine wired
to a hub on a wired modem/router and so I don't use WiFi, but I'm
thinking if I do, there should be some gotchas.  Yes this is an anti-
virus question, don't be stupid you a.c.a-v freaks.  For the rest of
you, even you Linux freaks, this should be right up your alley.

I have newbie questions such as:

1) Password.  You are supposed to change the Default Password from
"linksys" to something else that's hard to crack.  Is this done in the
WiFi hardware installation or by Win7?

2)  Public vs private network. W7 has a distinction, but all I can
tell is that when sharing a WiFi say at Starbucks, you switch to
"public" from "private" by clicking on the "public" icon in W7 as
shown by numerous HOWTO sites on the web--is that it?  Is there
anything more?

3) What if, assuming I get wireless for the home (like I say right now
I got everything at home wired, but I might switch to wireless now
that I got this new laptop), you find that a neighbor is sharing your
wireless connection?  I hear this is possible, but does that person
need a password?  I think they do.  If I give them a password, will
they be able to read my files on my hard drive, or just be able to
share my internet connection?  I don't mind the latter, unless they
are a download hog, but I mind the former.

Any advice "appreciated", even from you critics that think they know
it all.  You know who you are.  Yeah you.  Ash whole.

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

RayLopez99 wrote:
Newsgroups: alt.comp.anti-virus, microsoft.public.windows.vista.general,
alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt, comp.os.linux.setup

Not antivirus, not vista, not homebuilt, not linux setup - and RL
doesn't read some of the groups that he crossposts to

f/ups to cols only - which is where I read the message

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http://bit.ly/hIi5eZ+ This article will guide you on how to change the
password of your Linksys router.

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http://grok.lsu.edu/Article.aspx?articleid=13097 Windows 7: Changing
Between Public and Private Networks       

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<regarding wi-fi security>

You should configure your wireless with WPA secured password. You can
get in 'trouble' if someone uses your connectivity for bad purposes.



--
Mike Easter

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/19/2010 5:38 AM, RayLopez99 wrote:
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You will set up your wireless router by connecting it to your PC with an
ethernet cable (temporarily). You enter the router setup by following
the instructions in your manual. For linksys you open a web browser and
type the address http://192.168.1.1 and Go.

The router setup is where you name your network and setup your wireless
security.

Password:
"Linksys" or "Netgear" are not the passwords you should concern yourself
with. They are the default names of your wireless network. You should
change the name of your network to something less identifiable.
Something like 7X5gT0, not something like "Apt 322" or "Joe's House".
Your new router will allow you to enter the setup by using the User Name
"admin" and a blank password. After entering the setup and making sure
your wireless network is working you should change these. Normal User
Name and Password rules work here like any website.
The point is you do not want your neighbor to see "Joe's House" as a
possible connection and then just log in to your router setup using
linksys and no password. Unbelievably, this is the way a lot of wireless
routers are set up.

Wireless Security:
The wireless security type you use must be capable in your wireless
devices. Only very old devices can't handle advanced security encryption.
The security types you can choose from are WEP, WPA, and WPA-2. WEP is
antiquated and useless. WPA is good and WPA-2 is better.
Here is where you will be asked to come up with an Encyption Key. This
is the "password" that is important. Linksys automatically generates a
20+ character key. The longer the key, the better the security.
This key is what you will need to get your PC and any other wireless
device to use the wireless connection.

In Windows
You will see a wireless connection named 7X5gT0 in your Network. You
click on it and there will be a "Connect" button. Click that and it will
connect to the router and up will pop the "Password" screen. Here you
type in that 20+ character Encryption Key to be able to use the wireless
network. Somewhere in here Windows will ask if this is a Home or Public
Network. A home network is treated as a private (secure) network by
Windows. A Public network is treated as an open, unsecured network
connection.
When you installed and set up Windows the OS asked if your PC was part
of a Home or Public Network. You may need to change that in Network &
Sharing Center.

Hope that helps.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

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OK, so apparently a human recognizable network name is a sign of
unsophistication and invites hackers.  Got it.


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Question: the longer the key the better the security, but I think
(from my experience) the longer the key the slower the connection too,
right? Maybe not radically slower, but it should be slower with a
bigger key.  Please confirm.


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Question: why would anybody use a public network then, such as
Starbucks?  Why do people do this?  They don't care if people read
their email, is that it? Or does Starbucks always have HTTPS?


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Yes it does, thanks.

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/19/2010 8:25 PM, RayLopez99 wrote:
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Hey Ray
My understanding is that the actual encryption of the data is performed
by an algorithm built into the security protocol and is randomly
generated. The "Encryption Code" I mentioned is technically the
"Pre-Shared Key (PSK)". And the PSK is simply a "password". So the
length of the key is for security in a password sense and has no direct
effect on the actual encrytion algorithm.
Sorry for the confusion.

Wireless networks are inherently insecure. You are broadcasting your
data like a radio station. That is the trade off we make for the ease
and convenience of wireless.
Fortunately, it takes effort to actually hack into someones wireless
network, so the current security measures we have are effective in a
real world sense. Only a tiny percentage of the population has the
know-how, and you have to have something they want for them to go
through the trouble. The biggest issue, by far, is people "free riding"
on your internet connection. Not master criminals trying to steal your
stuff.
A little common sense goes a long way when using wireless, or computers
in general. If you work for the US State Department maybe you want to be
more careful. But if you are Joe-Shmoe no one cares - really!

Wireless security we have today is like having locks on your doors. Do
these provide security? Yes they Do. Do they provide complete
protection? Of course not! But you probably don't need to live in a
concrete bunker given the probability of the risks.



Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

Per TVeblen:
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Given that, could somebody list a dumbed-down version of the
real-world hazards associated with just leaving a home WAP
"Public" - i.e. with no password needed.

Seems like that would be the case with a lot of small restaurants
and other businesses where they don't subscribe to one of the
commercial "Free WiFi" services.
--
PeteCresswell

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

wrote:
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riding"
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your
computers
to be





http://cybercoyote.org/classes/wifi/hotspots.shtml

http://hubpages.com/hub/IdentityTheftWirelessNetwork

You do have what they want, and if they can get it, you got some
trouble. You got more trouble than you need. So why leave the door
open, even Joe Shome?

--
posted with a Droid

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 20/12/2010 9:00 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:
[...]
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The real world hazard is that someone else could gain access to your
machine without your knowledge. Given such access, it's possible to
install stealthware on your computer in a few seconds, and to copy any
data on your machine.

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Public wi-fi, protected or not, is open in the sense that anyone
connected to one could see and attack any other connected machine.  If
you must use public hot spots, make sure you have shields up, so that
any evil stuff is blocked by your machine. It won't be blocked by the
network. Also, enable encryption, to protect your data.

Bottom line: protect your wi-fi network with a password, and keep your
shields up, and encrypt the data.

BTW, my ISP's wi-fi router/modem is protected by default. You can't set
up an open network with it. Very sensible.

HTH
Wolf K.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/19/2010 5:38 AM, RayLopez99 wrote:
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You would access the router through the browser to access the router
administration pages, off of the router's device IP in the browser's
address line.
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In the public domain, you only want to go to sites that are using HTTPS
or your machine has a VPN connection to the site both use encryption, if
credentials are needed to login to the site.

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If using WPA on the router, then the wireless client must know the
password for the WPA in order to access the wireless.
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I use my Droid as the 3G Mobile Hotspot for my wireless laptop, which I
am using now, and it's WPA2 enabled.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On Dec 19, 5:27=A0pm, Steel <""Fake99XX1199999fake\"@(Big)
(Steel)theXfactor.com"> wrote:

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How would you know if it's HTTPS?  Does a little padlock icon show up,
like in Firefox?  Also do most airports and Starbucks, in your
experience, have VPN and/or HTTPS?



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OK, thanks.


Do you think the bigger (longer) the encryption key, the slower the
connection?  Classic communications theory predicts that, but I'm
curious if anybody has seen it in practice.  Maybe it's only 10% so
people don't really notice.

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/19/2010 8:28 PM, RayLopez99 wrote:
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Do you mean to tell me that you have never been to a Website that is
using HTTPS:\ in the URL? If you have been to a bank site or any other
site that is using HTTPS as a secure connection, like a site you
purchase things with a credit card, you are going to clearly see the
HTTPS:\ as part of the URL in the browser's address line.

As for the VPN, the link below should explain it. You also have ISP(s)
that have VPN as part of their customer package, which you can do a VPN
over wireless in a public hotspot to get protected email and other
things provided by a VPN enabled ISP.

http://www.plathome.com/products/packetix/manual/html/10-12.htm

The thing is this. If you want security over wireless where you are
giving up credentials like user-id and password to login to a site, then
you should have some kind of secure encrypted connection. You have
people sitting around those hotspot sites, looking to eavesdrop on
sensitivity information and/or credentials.

If you are just surfing sites at a hotspot, big deal, your not concerned
about the security over wireless. But if you are using wireless where
credit card information is being given up to do a purchase, you don't do
it at a hotspot or you make sure that HTTPS is being used at the site to
protect the connection.

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I have not paid any attention to it, because wireless is slower than a
wire connection, a given to be expected when using wireless. I have not
seen any download speed degradation in using the Droid as a hotspot and
doing downloads to the laptop

I also use the Droid smartphone about 99.9%, which can do everything the
laptop can do in a personal usage situation while I am traveling,  from
doing MS Office documents to going into HTTPS sessions over wireless
with the HTTPS showing in the smartphone browser's address line, doing
Usenet,  email with my ISP and Gmail too -- all of it. All that I was
doing on the laptop, I do with the smartphone.

You don't need to go into a hotspot with a wireless laptop to do
something. That smartphone is a little laptop you carry in your pocket.
I may get a Windows 7 phone too, just on GP. :)


Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On Dec 20, 5:13=A0am, Steel <""Fake99XX1199999fake\"@(Big)
(Steel)theXfactor.com"> wrote:
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OK, as I thought:  the little padlock.

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I see.  I have signed up for Steganos VPN (1 year license $99, kind of
expensive, now expired for me) and I will do so again (unless you can
direct me to a free version) for when using this laptop in a public
hotspot.  Thanks for the tip.

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Interesting.  Do you think Droid or Windows 7 is more compatible for
international travel?  Kind of like a US carrier (good only for the
US) vs AT&T (which has the best international coverage)?  I travel a
lot internationally, and though I swap the SIM card on my mobile phone
eventually, I always carry the AT&T cell phone since in almost every
country it will work at the airport (but expensive).  Same for Droid
vs W7 smartphones?

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/20/2010 6:05 AM, RayLopez99 wrote:
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You can be in a HTTPS session with a C#.NET Windows desktop solution
that is consuming HTTPS Web service, as an example, based on the URL
with HTTPS in the app.config.
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I couldn't tell you if an ISP is free with a VPN. I suspect the VPN
service will not be free.

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If you are talking about AT&T having international coverage, it has a
Windows 7 phone. I don't know if Win 7 phone has WIFI hotspot like the
Droid Incredible and later Droid phones have as a feature. I am sure
AT&T has Droid phones too. I am also sure the Win 7 phone will do WIFI
hotspot at some point, if Win 7 phone doesn't already have it.
'
I can only tell you about the US experience. I was using Cricket's
wireless with a USB WIFI card dedicated to Cricket's WIFI for the
laptop. I was in a no coverage area, but I was able to connect the
laptop to the Droid's WIFI hotspot and use the WIFI with the laptop.
Needless to say, I have not used Cricket from that point, which was
costing $40 a month. I just applied $20 to Verizon's Internet coverage
through the Droid hotspot now.

I guess you're going to have to do your homework on what type of
smartphone to get and what the phone provider has for coverage and other
features. Verizon has international roaming too. More and more sites are
becoming smartphone friendly or you can contact a site about it becoming
smartphone friendly. I think you'll find that sites are making the move
to become smartphone friendly, because they cannot ignore it.






Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On Dec 20, 3:02=A0pm, Steel <""Fake99XX1199999fake\"@(Big)
(Steel)theXfactor.com"> wrote:

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Thanks.  I found the right VPN services to use, it is this one, not
Steganos, see here:


http://bestvpnreviews.com/top-3-vpn-services/vpn4all-basic-review

VPN4All Basic Review is best overall, works even in China!

HideMyAss Pro VPN Review  http://bestvpnreviews.com/category/vpn-reviews
is second best

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

On 12/19/2010 5:38 AM, RayLopez99 wrote:

Here are some other basics for what they are worth.

<http://compnetworking.about.com/od/wirelesssecurity/tp/wifisecurity.htm

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

90e8-aa0f6312d52e@u3g2000vbj.googlegroups.com:

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That's probably because you are a newbie. <G>
Dude, just type "how do I setup a secure wifi network?" in google.
You'll get *all* of those questions answered in a very helpful fashion.
Newbie style; so you will have no trouble understanding it. If you have
questions after doing this, then present them to the appropriate place.
Say, a networking newsgroup?

I'm not sure why you mentioned linux or windows in the post tho;
Neither of those are relevent for what your doing with the router. It
matters on the PC side sure, but not the router usually.

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I consider myself neither critic nor friend. Neutral for the most part.
I'd point out an error if I found one in any persons post; and I would
expect/hope they'd do the same for me. Information is only worth
something if it's accurate ya know.


--
Hackers are generally only very weakly motivated by conventional
rewards such as social approval or money. They tend to be attracted by
challenges and excited by interesting toys, and to judge the interest
of work or other activities in terms of the challenges offered and the
toys they get to play with.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7


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Thanks.  After reading this article:
http://www.labnol.org/internet/secure-your-wireless-wifi-network/10549 /
I've concluded a wireless network is inherently insecure.  Might not
end up using it at home.

Practical question:  when at airports, Starbucks, etc, and you want to
send an email, do you do so with impunity or with the chance somebody
can steal your password when you log on?  I might end up just using
the laptop at such "public" places so I need more info on what to do
there.

Also what is the usenet group for networking?  I use Google Groups and
could not find any.

RL

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7


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I have wireless disabled presently; Only use it when it's not feasable
to run a hardline.
 
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I've answered as much as i'm going to do so; as I see you've
crossposted this all over the place... Very trollish behavior... btw.
 
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I found an alt.comp.networking.routers newsgroup on this server.. Your
milage may vary.



--
Hackers are generally only very weakly motivated by conventional
rewards such as social approval or money. They tend to be attracted by
challenges and excited by interesting toys, and to judge the interest
of work or other activities in terms of the challenges offered and the
toys they get to play with.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7

[...]

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Use a Blackberry, their service encrypts everything.

But if you can't afford one, then:

If the public place offers wired terminals for your use, use those to
access the web-mail portal, and make sure your account is set to "leave
messages on server" so that you can get the mail at home later. If you
want a copy on your laptop, add your address as BCC, you'll receive a
copy next time you get home. Personally, I never use my laptop for web
access or e-mail in a public place.

If you insist on using your laptop, the best you can do is increase the
hassle factor for anyone who wants to get your password and e-mail.
That's already been done: AFAIK, all ISP's require encrypted passwords
these days. An encrypted p/w is a little (but not much) more difficult
to use. Your address is more useful, but these days it's easier to
generate addresses. (1) IOW, don't sweat it too much.

OTOH, since the e-mail itself can be intercepted, you might want to be
careful what you write. Just keep in mind that Homeland Security now has
the authority to intercept all e-mails from and to the USA. They do it,
too. So do the usual suspects in other parts of the world, and those
that haven't done so either haven't done the authorising legislation
yet, or can't afford the hardware and software. All web traffic is
compromised in this sense. Public key encryption is a good way to make
it very difficult for someone else to read your mail (PGP is one
method). However, just using it is likely to make the authorities pay
attention to you: if you're hiding something, you have something of
interest to hide, you see....

(1) A spammer can generate addresses from names the same way your ISP
does when it offers suggestions for your new e-mail address. The spammer
will have already generated your address, in fact. I mean, look at it: I
bet there is a raylopez89..., a raylopez56..., etc and so on and so forth.

HTH
Wolf K.

Re: WiFi security issues? Newbie ? for W7



http://www.ezlan.net/index.html

--
Peter
Please Reply to Newsgroup for the benefit of others
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