Computers / Tips and Solutions

KRACK, Wi-Fi, and You

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Recently, a new wireless vulnerability known as KRACK has been the talk of the town, and its affects are far-reaching. Without getting too technical, KRACK (Key Reinstallation AttaCK) allows attackers to access data stored on the devices you have connected to your Wi-Fi network, which means everything with Wi-Fi connectivity is potentially vulnerable. Yes, that includes your smartphone, TV, gaming console, Echo, toaster, doorknob, and so on. (Jokes aside, this is a serious issue and shouldn’t be taken lightly.) If your network is using the WPA2 encryption protocol, which honestly almost everything is nowadays, it’ll be vulnerable to this exploit. It goes without saying that it requires attackers to be physically within range of your network, so if you happen to be ten miles from the nearest living being, your chances are a somewhat better than compared to someone living in an apartment building in New York City.

So now that we know it’s out there, what should we do about it? Well, first, everyone should check if their router security needs an update. After that, see if your router manufacturer has released a firmware upgrade. Keeping your router up-to-date is important to ensure that new vulnerabilities are patched. Thankfully, you’re not in this fight alone. Eero has already started rolling out automatic updates to its popular Whole Home Wi-Fi systems. So, if you’re an eero user, you’re set. Being proactive at a time like this, is a good thing. Microsoft also issued a security update earlier this month to address this vulnerability. While you’re at it, you might as well change the Wi-Fi password, too. (Yeah, I know it’s a pain, but better safe than sorry, right?) Lastly, flip through all your Wi-Fi devices for updates, as well. Not all devices will have a patch or update, so some devices will be left hanging in the wind. Does that mean WPA2 is no longer safe and we should switch to WPA or WEP? The answer is no. Keep using WPA2.

To sum it up, if your device supports Wi-Fi, it is most likely vulnerable to this attack. Check your network security to ensure your software is up to date. Do you have any questions or concerns regarding KRACK? Let us know in the Comments section, below.

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