[ISN] Security UPDATE -- A Peek into the Future of Wi-Fi Security --
September 7, 2005
isn at c4i.org
Thu Sep 8 02:39:00 EDT 2005
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Gone in 30 Days: Exchange, Retention, and Regulatory Compliance
1. In Focus: A Peek into the Future of Wi-Fi Security
2. Security News and Features
- Recent Security Vulnerabilities
- Another IE Flaw Surfaces
- Long Registry Keys Can Help Hide Malware
3. Security Toolkit
- Security Matters Blog
- Security Forum Featured Thread
4. New and Improved
- Desktop Spyware Protection for SMBs
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==== 1. In Focus: A Peek into the Future of Wi-Fi Security ====
by Mark Joseph Edwards, News Editor, mark at ntsecurity / net
Today, Wi-Fi networks are secured by using a number of methods. Those
methods protect Access Points (APs) and clients from a wide variety of
attacks: connection hijacking, unauthorized connections to legitimate
APs, Denial of Service (DoS) attacks, address spoofing, attempts at
network bridging, rogue APs, man-in-the-middle attacks, and the list
Any sort of wireless communication is more difficult to defend than a
wired network. One main reason is that radio waves propagate. Unless
your network has extremely sophisticated transmitters, antennas, and
wave propagation limiters, controlling the extent to which your waves
are traveling is very difficult. If intruders can pick up your Wi-Fi
signals, they have some amount of access to the communication taking
place. But encryption helps protect the data being transmitted, and AP
and client security systems help prevent intrusion and service
A number of security solutions are designed specifically to protect
wireless networks, and they work reasonably well, but there is still
room for improvement. In the near future, we'll see enhancements and
features added to many of those solutions, and we'll undoubtedly see
new solutions come to the marketplace.
At the recent Intel Developer Forum, Justin Rattner, Intel senior
fellow and director of Intel's Corporate Technology Group, demonstrated
some interesting new wireless networking technology that could help
improve security. The technology involves wireless devices that can
become aware of a person's physical location, similar to GPS technology
but without the need for orbiting satellites. The company said that its
client location technology is currently accurate to within a 1-meter
In essence, an AP uses the new technology to determine a client's
location by timing the transmission of data to and from the client.
Because the rate of travel can be known, the distance between APs and
clients can be calculated.
AP antennas can play a significant role in the refinement of client
location systems because the antennas can be designed to transmit
signals within a specific area in a given direction. A specially
designed AP antenna could allow an AP to determine where a client is
located relative to the AP's position. I suspect that Intel's
technology takes advantage of a somewhat unique antenna design as
compared to typical AP antennas in use today.
The security of wireless networks could be greatly improved by using
client location awareness. In practice, an AP could be configured to
allow connections only from devices that are within 30 feet. Similarly,
wireless Intrusion Detection Systems (IDSs) could be set to detect any
client systems attempting communication from farther away than a
predefined distance from the AP.
Of course the application of such technology isn't limited to enhanced
security. During his demonstration, Rattner showed how he could be
tracked in an on-stage mock-up of a home. As he moved from place to
place, wireless transmission of a video broadcast was switched to the
screen closest to him. However, to security administrators, this peek
into the near future is most interesting because of the significant
implications for improved network security.
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==== 2. Security News and Features ====
Recent Security Vulnerabilities
If you subscribe to this newsletter, you also receive Security
Alerts, which inform you about recently discovered security
vulnerabilities. You can also find information about these
Another IE Flaw Surfaces
Tom Ferris reported a new flaw in Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE)
6.0 on fully patched Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) systems. While
Ferris offered few details about the problem on his Web site, the
vulnerability reportedly could allow a remote intruder to install
remote code and completely take over an affected system.
Long Registry Keys Can Help Hide Malware
Last week, an interesting discovery was made regarding the Windows
registry. Apparently, long keys can't be viewed or deleted by using
regedit or many third-party tools designed to detect malware. Registry
keys that exceed 254 characters in length are basically invisible
unless the tool being used to read the registry is designed to
accommodate longer keys.
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==== 3. Security Toolkit ====
Security Matters Blog: Bam! Google Hacking Just Got Kicked Up a Notch
by Mark Joseph Edwards, http://list.windowsitpro.com/t?ctl=12DE2:4FB69
If Emeril Lagasse were a hacker, he'd probably be using the new Google
mining toolset, Massive Enumeration Tool (MET). Written in the Python
scripting language, MET is a collection of scripts designed to mine
data from the gigantic databases stored by Google's search engine.
by John Savill, http://list.windowsitpro.com/t?ctl=12DE1:4FB69
Q: How can I set the default domain user profile?
Find the answer at
Security Forum Featured Thread: Rights Required to Allow Changing
A forum participant writes that he's trying to use xcacls.vbs to
allow his Help desk staff to change the owner on a user's home
directory when it's initially created. The command-line options he uses
(listed in the Security Forum post) work fine under his account, which
has Domain Admin rights, but the Help desk technicians receive an error
when they run the command with the same options. He's tried giving the
Help desk technicians "Take ownership" and "Restore files" rights on
the file server, but that doesn't fix the problem. If you can help,
join the discussion at
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