Connect802 is a nationwide wireless network reseller providing system design consulting, equipment configuration, and installation services.


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Our professional RF engineering team is ready to work with you to provide RF CAD site survey services, design consulting, RF spectrum analysis, complete wireless network equipment sales, configuration and staging, and nationwide installation services. Call us to discuss your Wi-Fi, WiMAX, WVoIP, or any other wireless data network project.
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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z [NUMBER ENTRIES]

  • Reasonably strong - It must provide a reasonable level security, roughly equivalent to the security that is present in a wired LAN.  It's important to remember that WEP was never designed to be "the strongest" security.
  • Self-synchronizing - Each packet must have enough information within itself for a station to decrypt it.  The decryption of one packet must not depend on the receiver having seen or decrypted any previous packet.  This quality is known in encryption circles as "self-synchronizing".  That WEP be self-synchronizing was important because stations might go in and out of coverage and might miss packets that were sent to them.
  • Computationally efficient - Stations must be able to encrypt and decrypt packets quickly so that throughput is not affected.
  • Exportable - At the time that WEP was designed, encryption algorithms with a key length over 40 bits could not be exported.  Therefore, WEP's key length was originally limited to 40 bits.
WEP can also be used to authenticate users before they associate to an access point in a process called Shared Key Authentication.  In this method, the access point sends a random string of text to the client, who uses its WEP key to encrypt the string.  If the client correctly encrypts the string, demonstrating that it has the same WEP key as the access point, then the authentication succeeds.  Although this simple form of authentication is arguably better than nothing, more robust authentication methods are preferred for networks that can support them.

Several weaknesses in WEP's implementation were eventually discovered.  These weaknesses made it possible for an attacker to decrypt WEP packets without knowing the key and, eventually, to learn the key for a network, in addition to other, less significant attacks.  In addition, WEP was not designed in a way that allowed it to scale to large, enterprise installations.  WEP keys had to be manually configured, and all stations on an AP had to have the same WEP key.  If a WEP key was compromised, the administrator had to manually reconfigure all stations!  802.1x/EAP, WPA, and 802.11i addressed these concerns.
   
   
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