Wi-Fi & Security - How Safe is your Wi-Fi?
But the major challenge that organizations like yours face in a transforming, hyperconnected, wireless business landscape is the networking security issues that come along. COVID-19 has disrupted your business operations with a surge in demand for remote working, automation, virtual employee interaction, online learning, customer connectivity, IoT devices, and more evolving technologies. When the world went into lockdown in March 2020, the total number of brute force attacks against remote desktop protocol (RDP) witnessed a 197% increase, from 93.1 million worldwide in February 2020 to 277.4 million 2020 in March. In July 2020, India recorded its highest number of attacks at 4.5 million.
As you progress to innovate and transform your business operations, it gives cybercriminals more attack surface on your business network, and hackers exploit unguarded wireless links. So the question is- is your Wi-Fi network secure? If yes, would it be able to thwart any cyberattacks coming your way? Let’s see what a safe Wi-Fi network means.
What is a safe Wi-Fi network?
A safe wireless network should operate on the latest, compatible protocols, software updates, and technologies. It should facilitate the use of VPNs and primarily safeguard your internal, private business networks for maintaining the integrity of client information, business data, and employee details. Your network should enable end-to-end, enhanced data encryption with multi-level protection strategies for DDOS attack prevention, Man in the Middle(MITM) attacks, trojans, and the whole wide spectrum of cybercrimes. Cybercriminals prey on Wi-Fi networks because they are vulnerable and easy to penetrate through. To safeguard your business from losing revenue to ransom and client information to public networks, you must ensure that your Wi-Fi solution comes with a safety shield for your critical enterprise data. Hence, you should be aware of how your wireless network could be compromised so that you can take preventive measures to combat them at the root.
How can hackers prey on your Wi-Fi vulnerabilities?
Man in the Middle attacks(MITM)
MITM is a cyberattack where a perpetrator intercepts the communication between you and your client, colleagues, stakeholders, or business applications. They either eavesdrop or impersonate one of you, making it seem like a normal information exchange.
This attack aims to steal personal information such as account details of users, business app login credentials, and credit card numbers. The hackers typically target your business if you use financial and SaaS applications, e-commerce sites, and other websites with required user authentication and logins.
If you are a co-working or co-living business or a retailer or hospitality provider with a public Wi-Fi network for your customers, you should proactively secure your Wi-Fi network against wardriving.
Wardrivers travel around, usually in vehicles, searching for Wi-Fi signals, plot the Wi-Fi access points on a map, and access the data on those networks. They can gain access to any device connected to your wireless network and engage in malicious activities with your or your customers’ devices. Then they can use that access point on your network to commit online frauds like identity theft.
Evil Twin attacks
Hackers prey on impatient internet users for an evil twin attack. More than 80% of people will connect to any Wi-Fi network available to them.
Due to the vulnerabilities in the security system of your Wi-Fi network, attackers can succeed in creating a fake Wi-Fi access point in your business network to carry out an evil twin attack. They would then wait for your business user or customer to log in to that network and then intercept it to commit a cybercrime. Many financial frauds are committed via this attack by directing the payment to another account.
Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS)
DDoS attacks are projected to double from 7.9 million in 2018 to 15.4 million by 2023. As you pace towards digital innovation of your business and move your resources and communication online, your network becomes more susceptible to a DDoS attack.
The attacker inundates your site with traffic from multiple sources to overwhelm your server until it crashes. In addition to direct financial losses, a DDoS attack can severely damage your company’s reputation due to a prolonged network infrastructure outage.
Rogue access point attack
An attacker or a misinformed employee can create an unauthorized access point in your network, making it vulnerable to numerous attacks via that rogue access point. It can then provide the attack surface on your wireless network to the attacker for DoS attacks, ARP poisoning, packet captures, and more. If your Wi-Fi network security is breached through a rogue access point, your business can face data theft, data destruction, loss of services, malicious data insertion, and third-party attacks.
If you are entitled to securing sensitive data of your customers and clients, or social media credentials of important social handles, then you need to implement robust encryption methods to combat session hijacking in your business Wi-Fi network.
If not encrypted, the hacker can hijack your web session and gain access to any private accounts you're logged into. They can then masquerade as an authorized user to access your sensitive information.
7 Ways to Make your Wi-Fi Cyberattack-Proof
Encrypt your business traffic with VPNs
Approximately 24.7% of Wi-Fi hotspots in the world do not use any encryption at all, which makes things easier for cybercriminals. While HTTPS has made networking much safer for Wi-Fi users on public and private connections, VPNs pick up the slack to eliminate snooping. VPNs encrypt the DNS requests made by your business users to mitigate the risk of a cyberattack.
Use WPA2 and latest firmware
WEP is an extremely hackable and obsolete encryption protocol, which might not be compatible with your business network. Being a modern business, you should ensure that your business network leverages WPA or WPA2 as the default to effectively secure your Wi-Fi network.
Install web application firewall
Web application firewalls can go a long way to protect your web assets and on-premises networks to avoid cybercrimes and network perimeter intrusion. Installing a next-gen firewall establishes a security layer between you and the public network to combat various intrusive and malicious activities such as mitigating DDoS attacks, preventing customer data breaches, and blocking malicious data abuse.
Disable WPS functionality on routers
From an attacker’s perspective, your business network has a wide attack surface if you have enabled your Wi-Fi Protected Setup. A hacker can locate your WPS-enabled network with a single command and target it for attacks such as WPS-Pixie. With your WPS PIN, it is a piece of cake for a hacker to guess your password, no matter how long or unique. This is because WPS setup PIN was designed to recover lost passwords in the first place.
Update public usage terms
Remote working employees in your organization must be increasingly utilizing new public networks while working from different locations. Hackers prey on your public Wi-Fi security aspects as they are highly vulnerable, often unprotected, and easy to hack. So, you should train your remote employees to securely access public networks or avoid them altogether, as per your business guidelines.
With businesses moving to online channels, security and safety are major concerns to keep your ongoing and new ventures afloat and successive. With internet connectivity at the helm of your organizational operations and new ROI-driving initiatives, a safe, next-gen wireless network is a critical element.
As a Network-as-a-Service provider, we not only provide bespoke wireless solutions, we employ multifold security shields, including next-gen firewall and Unified Threat Management(UTM) solutions. Being an end-to-end network solution provider, we, at Spectra, deploy our robust managed Wi-Fi solution with a holistic feature portfolio for your business. Our team of network security experts proactively monitors and manages your network 24*7 to detect, curb and respond to any network threat. To fuel your business transformation with high-speed, ultra-secure Wi-Fi connectivity, reach out to us today.