It Pays to Secure Your Wireless Connection

Nemo - December 22, 2010 10:30PM in Networking, General News

These days it pays to use the best security available for your wireless connection, or maybe hacking your neighbor's wireless connection just doesn't pay. Either way you look at it, a man in Minnesota is facing up to 40 years in prison after pleading guilty to hacking his neighbor's wireless connection, identity theft, possession of child pornography along with issuing death threats against Vice President Joe Biden among others.

Barry Vincent Ardolf used the Aircrack software to crack into his neighbor's Wi-Fi that was secured using WEP encryption standard. Ardolf then set up accounts on Yahoo and MySpace to begin a campaign to embarrass his neighbor and cause him other troubles by e-mailing child pornography to the neighbor's co-workers at the law firm where he worked. Ardolf also used the fake MySpace account to post additional pornographic images. Fortunately for the victim, the law firm hired a security consultant who installed a packet sniffer which detected Ardolf logging into the Wi-Fi connection.

Both the older Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) and its replacement, Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) have known vulnerabilities which is why users should upgrade to the newer WPA-2 encryption.