[MLB-WIRELESS] How not to go war driving....

paul van den bergen pvandenbergen at swin.edu.au
Mon Nov 24 13:15:27 EST 2003

I think you are all mistaken if you think having WEP does anything like give 
you legal protection... or that the absense of any security is any sort of 
defense to electronic trespass.

On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 12:47 pm, Tony Langdon wrote:
> >  Whilst the cheapo lock/WEP at least needs someone to hacksaw
> > through it..
> > it removes any ambiguity or plausible deniability about their intent.
> Agreed.  WEP sends a clear signal that the network is not intended for
> public consumption, which could have significance in a court of law one
> day. As you say, no-one can claim you were a free for all hotspot if they
> had to crack WEP to get in.
> I run it on the privare AP specifically for that reason.  Of course, the MW
> omni AP will be open (but in a WDMZ, so only MW services that I and others
> provide will be accessible).

there are _clearly_ two seperate issues here, technical security issues - 
which WEP is not a candidate for (hey, even periodic WEP update is flawed) - 
and legal issues.

WEP is a technical issue. and a somewhat social issue related to "attitude to 
security" [1].
by implementing a broken security measure one runs a substantial risk of 
assuming one has partial coverage and hence not consider security further. In 
terms of security, all or nothing is the way to think about it... and note 
that HOW one thinks about security is more important than the way one 
actually tackles it technically...

Security is about people not technology. 

If you don't understand that you do not have security.  It is better to leave 
a network open and unsecure than to implement a solution that not only does 
not provide security but mimics security and masks security holes from 

turn WEP off and get a proper operating system. Understand what you are doing 
and implement a security protocol only if you need it.

[1] OK, so maybe there are 3 issues, technical, social and legal

Dr Paul van den Bergen
Centre for Advanced Internet Architectures
pvandenbergen at swin.edu.au
"And some run up hill and down dale, knapping the chucky stones 
to pieces wi' hammers, like so many road makers run daft. 
They say it is to see how the world was made."
Sir Walter Scott, St. Ronan's Well 1824 

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