There are several ways to crack a wireless network’s security. The weakest, WEP, can be easily cracked using customized Linux software, but until today, Wi-Fi Protected Access (or WPA) had been considered secure. Not any more. Researchers have announced that they’ve developed a way to partially crack the encryption standard, but I warn you, it’s not easy.
The researchers, Erik Tews and Martin Beck, have found a way to break the Temporary Key Integrity Protocol (or TKIP) in as little as 15-12 minutes. They have not yet, however, managed to crack the encryption keys used to secure the data that travels from the PC to the router.
This doesn’t mean that the security-conscious among you need to switch back to ethernet cables, there’s always WPA2, which is safe from this kind of attack. It’s worth mentioning, however, that the code the researchers used was quietly added to the Aircrack-ng program mentioned above about two weeks ago, so if you’re storing vast amounts of personal data then it might be worth upgrading sooner rather than later.
(via PC World)
By Duncan Geere | November 6th, 2008