Wi-Fi honeypots a new hacker trap

Hackers searching for wireless access points in the nation's capital may soon war drive right into a trap. Last month researchers at the government contractor Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) launched what might be the first organized wireless honeypot, designed to tempt unwary Wi-Fi hackers and bandwidth borrowers and gather data on their techniques and tools of choice.

That the average wireless network is horribly insecure is common knowledge today; surveys of populous metropolitan areas consistently turn up hundreds or thousands of 802.11b access points inadvertently left unprotected from unauthorized use or eavesdropping by anyone within range. (This in addition to many that are deliberately open to the public, either commercially or by the generosity of their owners). But while conventional wisdom holds that hackers are enjoying a golden era of untraceable ingress into corporate networks across the country, nobody claims to know exactly how prevalent wireless hacking really has become.

That's where the Wireless Information Security Experiment, or WISE, comes in. Headed by former Air Force computer security investigator Rob Lee, now an SAIC chief of information security operations, WISE hinges on an 802.11b network based at a secret location in Washington D.C. and dedicated to no other purpose than being hacked from nearby.

News source: The Register - Wi-Fi honeypots a new hacker trap

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