Wednesday, October 25, 2017

World-Wide Wi-Fi security flaw potentially affects personal and College-owned devices

On Monday October 16, 2017 news broke of a significant security flaw in WPA2, the security standard used by all modern Wi-Fi networks. This flaw allows attackers to access data flowing between your devices including, computers, tablets, phones, etc., and the Wi-Fi network to which they are connected. Possible risks include theft of data—including passwords—and injection of malware, viruses and spyware.

Services potentially affected: Most personal and College-owned devices, including computers, mobile devices, wireless routers, and wireless access points.

Services not affected: Wired Ethernet, devices that are not networked.

What you need to do: Macalester ITS is actively monitoring and patching systems as updates become available. Unfortunately, it may take several months for all vendors to release updates, and older devices may never be updated. Here’s what you can do to protect your—and Macalester’s—devices and data:

  • Check for and install updates frequently on all your devices to ensure that they receive patches for this and other vulnerabilities as they are released.
  • Install and update antivirus software on your computers. College-owned Windows and macOS computers already have System Center Endpoint Protection (SCEP) installed.
  • Update your home Wi-Fi. Check periodically for updates from your home router/modem manufacturer or service provider.

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