Consequences of war driving and insecure home networks - Sample Essay

War driving compromises wi-fi networks by allowing hackers to disrupt the operations of wi-fi networks as well as free access to sensitive, private data from legitimate wi-fi network users. Al Potter (manager, ICSA Network Security Lab manager) demonstrated how war drivers can relatively tap into private wi-fi networks. Tests done by Potter and his group revealed that they detected a significant number of unsecured LANs while driving at a constant speed of 65 mph going between Leesburg, Va. , and Dulles International Airport near Washington, D.C.

Potter was bewildered by the findings of their tests concluding that most individuals and companies are not even aware that their wi-fi servers are under constant threat from hackers that do war driving. Potter’s findings also coincide with Wysopal’s statements that war driving can be easily done, and it is believed that hackers now have a sort of compilation or “phone book” of some sort which lists unsecured and secured wireless networks that they can tap into using their GPS systems and wireless NIC’s (Miller, 2001).

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Insecure home networks A home network pertains to a small computer network (wi-fi systems included) limited within a private residence. Home networks are commonly established to facilitate digital domestic applications like home internet access, cable television and other functions.

Home wi-fi networks are now very popular due to their advantages (such as faster internet connection) and are fairly cheap and easy to install due to widely available consumer technologies such as 802.11, Bluetooth and HomeRF. A larger home network is relatively feasible now using Wide Area Network technologies, which consequently calls for standardization of middleware/common technologies such as UPnP, HAVi, Jini and OSGi. As implied earlier, home networks are prone to unauthorized access and hacking and most home consumers are unaware that most of their private data can be stolen or be tampered with if they are not careful of if they do not erect the necessary security features.

If home user continues to disregard their digital security, then hackers will have a good time tampering and hacking their precious data to their liking (Sengodan et al, n. d. ). Home networks are definitely easier for hackers and other cyber criminals to tamper with. Hackers can then freely do as they please to an unprotected home network, resulting to cyber-theft (of data, money and other valuables), breach of user privacy, damage to hardware and other such consequences.

Apprehension and persecution of cyber criminals are rare because crimes like these are fairly new and there are only a few laws in existence that pertain to cyber crimes and because of these reasons most cyber criminals run free and remain relatively anonymous. In order to prevent cyber crimes, new laws and acts must be made in order to counter the activities of cyber criminals. If not, hackers and cyber-criminals will continue to run rampant to do as they please.

The use of computer and other similar devices have been so much integrated in everyday modern life that probably each home and corporation has their own network of units. Common users may not consider their data as highly classified as with corporate files but the very idea of privacy certainly implies that the common user is also concerned about security. Hackers on the other hand do not generally care about the identity of their victims as all they want is control and access f their desired system or network.

The damage that they can do to corporate networks can also be applied to home systems, so private users should still be aware of the importance of a security system for their computer systems (“Home Network Security”, 2001). Information security is divided into three areas: first is confidentiality, which only properly means that the owner of the data should only be the sole person that has access to it. The second is integrity, which reserves the right of the owner to modify the data whenever he or she wills it. The third is availability or the accessibility of the data when and where the owner wills it.

These three concepts are very much applicable to home and corporate users alike. Security risks that are derived from these three concepts may occur when the user is online (hacking via the internet) or offline thru theft and other unscrupulous deeds (“Home Network Security”, 2001). Therefore, the need for an efficient and effective security system applies to all types of users and must include common security methods such as authentication, confidentiality, integrity, access control and non-repudiation (Sengodan et al, n. d. ).

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