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How to secure a wireless LAN

How should I go about securing my company's wireless LAN?

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There are many known vulnerabilties with wireless technology. The most basic of these is simply being able to intercept the signals as they pass through the air. The Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) protocol was supposed to provide security for wireless links, but it has been shown to be seriously insecure.

So, how do you secure a wireless LAN? The only safe way at the current time is to provide encryption for all the wireless links outside of the wireless products. The easiest way to do this is to use Virtual Private Network (VPN) technology. This will allow clients to establish encrypted tunnels over the wireless LAN to the servers they need to communciate with. Hopefully at some point in the future, WEP will be replaced by a protocol that actually does provide the security needed. Until then, a VPN is the way to go.

For more information on this topic, check out these resources:
Best Web Links: Virtual Private Networks
Best Web Links: Wireless Security
Featured Topic: Wireless Security

This was first published in December 2001

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