Recently, cybersecurity and IT service experts discovered a crucial weakness in Wi-Fi networks that may make users’ sensitive information vulnerable to cybercriminals. This threat is known as KRACK, or key reinstallation attack, and it could potentially allow attackers to steal info sent over open and private Wi-Fi connections. In this guide, readers can learn more about KRACK and the dangers it poses.
Why is KRACK So Dangerous?
KRACK attacks are dangerous simply because they’re so all-encompassing. Most who use Wi-Fi on their laptops, desktops, phones, and tablets do it through the Wi-Fi Protected Access or WPA2 protocol, which keeps info safe through encryption. However, KRACK makes that info less safe by allowing thieves to decipher the code protecting it. Cybercriminals may use KRACK to modify data transmitted to and from websites, which allows them to record usernames, passwords, email addresses, and banking information.
How Users Can Protect Themselves
While KRACK is widespread, there are ways to prevent attacks or lessen their effects. Users can follow these simple tips listed here:
- Before going into personal protection methods, we’ll discuss businesses. Business owners from small to large should always hire a professional IT service company to outsource their IT network and data security needs. This takes away the strain of trying to handle multiple users on your account, as the IT service technicians will maintain the integrity and protection of your company Wi-Fi.
- One of the easiest and most effective ways to protect against KRACK attacks is to perform regular OS updates. Microsoft, Google, Apple, and others are rolling out patches that protect users from the threat, and users should double-check that they have the latest updates.
- Use Wi-Fi only when needed. Until the security patch is installed, users should avoid Wi-Fi at home and in public. While home connections are slightly more secure, KRACK attacks can still happen. If Wi-Fi use is necessary, users should avoid transmitting confidential information.
- Update the router’s firmware. The router’s firmware helps it work with connected devices, and it’s important to keep it updated. When security patches roll out, users don’t want issues with unsupported or conflicting firmware versions. Thankfully, firmware updates are relatively hassle-free.
- Configure the router so only approved devices may connect. Each device has a MAC (media access control) address that identifies it as working with the network. Users can protect themselves by configuring their router to allow only listed devices, and the process may vary depending on the router’s brand.
- Hide the Wi-Fi network. While hiding a network won’t prevent an industrious hacker from finding it, it does install another protective layer that may help until a security patch rolls out.
- Avoid unencrypted sites. An encrypted website contains an HTTPS at the start of the URL, which means that info sent and received is secured. Users should stick to these sites to the extent possible, or use a browser plugin that switches sites to HTTPS automatically.
Finally, users can protect themselves by investing in cybersecurity. Good security software mitigates risk, and for critical attacks such as KRACK, companies like Braintek in Houston, can provide the software and IT service support needed to protect users’ sensitive data.
Is It Possible to Tell if Info is Being Stolen Over Wi-Fi?
As of now, there’s no way to tell if a KRACK attack has taken place. That’s why it is particularly important for users to watch for critical security updates, and to follow the recommendations listed above. By working with an IT Service company like Braintek, Houston businesses can especially enjoy a safer and more secure Wi-Fi experience. Company owners can easily connect with us at 281-367-8253 for an initial consultation.