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Protect the Air: The Importance of Securing Wireless Networks

Wireless traffic is broadcast over the "air." If your wireless network is not secure or poorly secured, you may be unintentionally putting yourself and your information at risk to those looking to intercept it. These risks could come in the shape of intruders just looking to leech bandwidth, or, on the more malicious side, could mask criminal activity or gain access to private or confidential corporate data.

A wireless network is a direct back door into the victim's private network and could be an indirect back door into a corporate network. In the case of a private network, most people assume they are protected by a firewall; hence they drop their guard, share drives and become careless. The intruder can take advantage of this by probing undisturbed and gain access to confidential data like tax records or work-related documents that the victim has brought home from the office.

In the case of a corporate network, an intruder can specifically target an employee of a company whose confidential information is valuable for monetary or competitive reasons. The unauthorized user may capture data and exploit network-based resources or pose an attack, which may crash an entire network and potentially subject the organization to legal liabilities.

It is vital that individuals and businesses take necessary precautions to ensure the security of their wireless network. To ensure maximum security:

  • Establish specific wireless network security policies and procedures.
  • Implement physical/environmental security—ensure that guests are checked-in and escorted appropriately by authorized personnel.
  • Deploy appropriate security settings for all wireless devices.
  • Separate internal networks from wireless connection.

For more information about securing your wireless networks, contact your Eide Bailly service provider.

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