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What is the cause of a wireless LAN's unsecured connection?

In our expert Q & A, network security expert, Mike Chapple, reveals the reason behind your wireless LAN's "unsecured connection."

My wireless LAN connection is showing as an "unsecured connection," even though my system had just been properly firewalled. Has my host firewall been configured correctly, and if not, how can I rectify the problem?
Actually, you're comparing apples and oranges here. The statement "unsecured connection" in the context of a wireless network refers to the network's failure to implement encryption. Your host firewall might be configured to protect your computer from unauthorized connections over the network, but the traffic passing over that network might still be exposed to prying eyes.

To resolve this problem, you'll want to implement Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) or, even better, Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA). Consult your wireless access point documentation for specifics on using these protocols.

More information
  • Learn more about WEP, WPA and your other wireless encyption options.
  • Do you know the three keys to a secure wireless connection?
  • This was last published in October 2006

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