For several years now, it has been the case that if you joined your personal or business wifi network with a password, your wireless connection was basically secure. As of this Monday, you can no longer assume that to be true.

A group of security researchers have discovered a major flaw in WPA2 protocol. By intercepting and reusing key portions of the process your routers and devices use to set up encryption between each other, an attacker will now be able to grab and decrypt information sent to and from your desktop, laptop, or smartphone. They will be able to view things like where you have gone on the internet, and in some cases, even be able to capture usernames and passwords. There is also the possibility that they will be able to insert bad data into your wifi connection allowing them to pretend to be a bank or business that you would normally expect to have a secure connection to.

What this means in practice is that everything you or your business does over wifi is now at a real risk of being listened in on. This information is still new as of this morning, but exploits like this spread very quickly and will be rolled into easy to use hacking tools by the end of the week if not sooner. If you run critical or sensitive information over wifi you should consider doing the following:

  1. Disable wifi on your laptop or desktop and plug in to your home or business network using a network cable.
  2. Do not use your smartphone to access any sensitive business or banking information if you are connected to wifi at the time.
  3. Check for updates to your desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones. These will most likely come in the form of an operating system security update (that is, an update to Window, macOS, iOS, or Android) that mention patching a wifi vulnerability.

Now, a bit of good news: Despite this being a major flaw in the most widely used wifi protocols, it is expected that this error can be patched on most or all affected devices. Most likely, this will be a significant problem, but a temporary one. Do keep in mind that some devices like older Macs and Android tablets and phones might not be getting software updates anymore and will remain vulnerable to this flaw even while newer, still supported products, are patched in fairly short order.

If you need help checking on the security status of your network, give us a call. We have helped Tyler and East Texas businesses large and small set up and secure their networks and we can help you evaluate the security situation of yours. You can reach us at 903-531-0377, by emailing info@etvsoftware.com, or by visiting our website at etvsoftware.com