Maintaining Wi-Fi Radio Silence

One of my favorite podcasts is Security Now with Steve Gibson, which is one of the series of podcast available on the TWiT.tv "network". Over the course of the last few episodes the topic of Wi-Fi security, as it related to Wi-Fi connectivity, has been discussed and I thought it was worth mentioning.

The issue is that there's a Microsoft update for the Wi-Fi drivers/modules in Windows XP that hasn't been added to the regular Express (recommended) update bundle, so you won't receive it automatically. The update, plus some configuration changes will prevent your laptop from; 1) making default connections to AdHoc WiFi nodes and 2) from beaconing your preferred networks (this seems to be the causes of the propagation of a Wi-Fi SSID called "Free Public Wi-Fi"). To implement the fix, just perform the following steps.

Step 1: Download and install the Microsoft Wireless Client Update from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/917021

Step 2: Follow the steps outlined in the show notes for making the wireless configuration changes at http://www.grc.com/sn/notes-081.htm

You can listen to all the details and discussion of this issue on the Security Now podcasts from episodes 80 through 83, or check out the show notes at http://www.grc.com/SecurityNow.htm

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