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WEP password

RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 632
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

WEP password

How often do people change the WEP passwords on their wireless routers? With MAC address filtering, I guess it's not that important, but without MAC address filtering, I intend to change mine weekly.

I'm not aware of any way of finding out whether somebody has repeatedly tried guessing the WEP password (in the same way that banks will shutdown online accounts if the password is guessed wrongly more than 3 times).

Moderators note (John) Topic moved to a more apt forum also please read the PM re your oversize Avatar.
4 REPLIES
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

WEP password

As far as im aware there is no way to know if someone has tried to
guess your passwords, if you have both wep and mac address filtering
you should be fine,

although both wep and mac can be cracked the average drive by
hotspot searcher is not going to be bothered trying as its quite tricky
and they will just move along even if they do locate your network

one thing you should do if you have the option within your router
setup is to disable ssid broadcast which is usually on by default
also your router login and password

i use both wep 64bit and mac ad filtering and havnt changed my password
from the start, if you want peace of mind its not going to hurt to change
it from time to time
N/A

WEP password

Stop SSID broadcast, if your router and NICs support it use 128 bit or greater WEP encryption. It has been known for hackers to break 128 bit passwords, so regular changing is a good idea. Check the router's logs frequently to see if any one has tried to access your network.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

WEP password

Your WEP passphrase, SSID and MAC address can be cracked just by capturing packets from your network. And passing them trough one of the WEP cracker programs that are available.
Then on some cards it is possible to spoof your Mac address, so even the Mac address filtering is defeated.
But these are all good lines of defence, and improved by changing your WEP passphrase and SSID regularly. It forces the cracker to keep going though the process of cracking your network.
Also to crack the WEP passphrase requires a large number of packets, which in a home network just sharing the internet and a few files, may take hours or even days to collect.

So unless there is a stranger sat in their car just outside your house, with a laptop for hours on end, then its one of your neighbour’s. If they are technical savvy enough to crack your WLAN, they will only be doing it for the challenge. (Someone near me has set their SSID to “unbreakable” now there IS a challenge.)

There are some more steps you can take to improve security, again they will not stop the determined cracker, but they may put off the causal.

Ensure that all your file shares are password protected.

Disable DHCP, and use static IP address’s within your network and do not use 192.168.0.0 to 192.168.255.255 range, as everyone uses that for home networks. Try one in 10.0.0.0 to 10.255.255.255 or 172.16.0.0 to 172.31.255.255 ranges.

Have a software firewall installed on each machine, and configured that only the know IP have access, and any other IP addresses are blocked. If using ZoneAlarm. Set the know IP’s as “Trusted” and the rest as “Internet”. Also dot them around not consecutive.

This way only a few IP addresses have access to your system, and the cracker has to find which ones. I know that by sniffing packets the cracker will be able to tell IP addresses you are using, but they will avoid the IP addresses in use, as using one of these normally leads to error message being displays about IP address already in use, alerting you to the hacker.

WLAN are not 100% secure, but you can sure make it difficult, and in reality unless you are a business with secretes to protect, you will not get targeted by any thing more than the casual cracker looking for a challenge.

Chilly
RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 632
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

WEP Password

Thank-you for all your advice. I have just found a webpage that people might find interesting (although I don't think that it says much that you guys haven't said):

http://www.intel.com/personal/do_more/wireless/security/plan/basic-print.htm