A wireless sniffer is a piece of software or hardware designed to gather and collect data that is transmitted through a computer network and decode the data into a format that is readable for humans. Wireless sniffers are like packet analyzers specifically created for capturing data on wireless networks. Wireless sniffers are also commonly referred to as packet sniffers, wireless packet sniffers or wireless network sniffers.
- Diagnosing and investigating network problems
- Monitoring network usage, activity, and security
- Discovering network misuse, vulnerabilities, malware, and attack attempts
Wireless Packet Sniffers Attacks
Hackers use wireless sniffer software to spy on open networks, steal data, gather confidential information to use in attacking a network. Login credentials are common targets for hackers using wireless sniffer tools. Wireless sniffing usually targets open networks, such as free WiFi at cafes, airports, hotels, etc.
Wireless sniffer tools are widely used in “spoofing” attacks, where an attacker uses data collected by wireless sniffer to impersonate the other recipient on the network. Spoofing attacks usually target business networks to steal information or run Man-In-The-Middle attacks.
Preventing Wireless Sniffer Attacks
There are several measures that organizations can take to mitigate wireless packet sniffer attacks:
2) Organizations can prevent attacks by using wireless sniffer software to sniff their own networks regularly. This allows security teams to view their networks from an attacker’s perspective and discover any vulnerabilities and attacks in their networks.
3) Companies must make sure to educate their employees to not open work files on Public WiFi. Anyone else connected to the same network can help themselves to your data. If it’s a matter of urgency, always protect yourself behind a VPN and use the unprotected network.
4) Encrypt! Encrypt! Encrypt!: Encrypt all the traffic that leaves your system. This will ensure that even if the traffic is being sniffed, the attacker will not be able to make sense of it. But, encrypting the data is not enough as the attacker might be able to capture a lot of data and try to decrypt it. Use secure protocols at all times to be safe.
No matter what’s the intention of the attacker, always use precautionary measures to stay secure.
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