WiFi Security -- Not - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-10-2009, 12:37 PM   #1
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Many of you already know this but I thought I would toss it out. It might save someone on the forum a lot of grief.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,531380,00.html

The main thing is don't be accessing any of your financial accounts from a public WiFi hot spot.
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:45 PM   #2
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One thing they left out is to always use WPA encryption, even on valid hotspots. Otherwise your conversation can be eavesdropped...
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Old 07-10-2009, 11:05 PM   #3
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Dana, how would you do that? It seems to me as one with little knowledge (though I do know what WPA encryption is), that you find the WiFi signal and it automatically connects when you tell it to. I would be interested to learn a more secure way to do this.
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Old 07-10-2009, 11:18 PM   #4
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Jim, I don't know exactly how to specify the encryption method in the various forms of Windows because I use Linux. However, if you go to Settings-Control Panel-Networking and look at the wireless networking options, I'm sure you can find and set the encryption method. You will most likely have to do it for each "location" you have (home, work, whatever) saved on your computer.
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Old 07-11-2009, 06:51 AM   #5
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I stumbled around on this as well and finally hit upon it, although I found it in the router software. I entered "http://192.168.1.1/" in the url section of IE and there was an option in "wireless security" under the "wireless" tab in my Linksys software on my main computer. Then I had to configure the laptop with the same settings and password as on the source computer.

But, this sort of thing is a rat's nest and I'm not a resource for sorting out conflicts. Use this advice at your own risk.
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Old 07-11-2009, 12:13 PM   #6
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An unsecured WiFi network is unsecured -- it won't work to turn WEP or WPA encryption on at your computer if the WiFi router isn't configured to use it as well. And, then you have to know the encryption key to type in to make the connection. So, best practice is to only connect to secured networks to which you have access to the key.

If you do choose to attach to unsecured "public" networks, understand that you are pretty much wearing red on Rush Street. Don't enter any passwords, credit card numbers, account numbers, or anything of the sort. Also, within the Windows Wireless Network Manager, there is an option for whether or not you connect to ad-hoc (peer-to-peer) networks. It is allowed by default, but you want to turn it off to prevent you from connecting directly to some bad guy's computer.

It is also a good idea to create a separate user on your computer that you use when you are going to connect to public sites. Give it only "guest" privileges to prevent a potential hacker from installing anything on your computer such as "phone home" malware or keystroke loggers.

To check your mail, change your password ahead of time for when you will be connecting to a public WiFi, and then change it again after you are done. Frequent password changes stymie even the best hackers.

The subject of WiFi security can be discussed forever, but the bottom line is that even with the best diligence, it really isn't all that secure, so treat it that way.

On other thing -- only connect to public sites that you KNOW are legit. Don't connect to an unsecured site just because it is there and has a good signal. Not only is it dangerous, it is also illegal unless permission is expressly granted. Legal precedent has consistently ruled against the user, often with startling fines, and sometimes even jail time.
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Old 07-13-2009, 12:33 PM   #7
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I am new to laptops and have been researching wifi antennas because I have heard that the wifi in campgrounds are hit and miss. I did find one that I thought would work but was then discontinued. I am still reading stuff. I don't want a big one to pull in someone esles wifi from a 1/2 mile away. Just the one in the campground or at a hotspot. After reading the post here I may use the laptop for movie only.

If anyone has had any luck with usb antennas and the software is compatible with vista I would like to here about the antenna. Thank You.
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Old 07-13-2009, 01:58 PM   #8
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Paul, lots of good info there, thanks.
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Old 07-13-2009, 07:50 PM   #9
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Here's some info on a wireless antenna. http://www.radiolabs.com/products/wireless/waverv.php
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Old 07-14-2009, 06:57 AM   #10
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Brian have you or anyone you know use this antenna? Like the fact it is made in the USA. It is pricy more then twice as much as the next one I looked at. The big thing is always does it work.
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