WiFi in New Orleans and Microsoft XP or Vista Systems

April 25, 2008

In most areas of New Orleans, WiFi is as ubiquitous as Microsoft.  Onsite Computer Services regularly encounters security problems when examining wireless networks throughout New Orleans.  We often discover routers without any security, not only with accessing a WiFi network and the information on its Ethernet network, but also with accessing routers with default user ids and passwords.  Without being technical, I’ll explain the potential problems with these two situations.

While Uptown servicing an Onsite client and using my laptop, I discovered a business location with both free wireless access, as well as free access to a company’s shared information on their business network of XP and Vista computers.  The information was viewable to anyone in the area with a wireless laptop.  There was neither security for accessing the wireless network, nor security for accessing the company’s data.  Upon closer scrutiny, the wireless router was using the default ‘admin’, ‘password’ login.  

Lack of security on wireless networks is a common occurrance; however this example was frightening.  A potential hacker could access this business network and all of the shared data with impunity.  With a standard wireless laptop a hacker could destroy the data, disable the networked computers, and disable the router.  Although disabled computers and routers are repairable, missing data is only as good as your backup.  How’s your backup?

I Googled an interesting wireless security article at About.com.  If you have a WiFi network, consider the ’10 Tips for Wireless Network Security’ by Bradley Mitchell.  Most WiFi owners don’t know they don’t know about wireless security.  ‘Unconscious incompetence’ can be problematic.  If you have any questions or comments, contact Onsite.

If you’re searching for computer consulting, repairs or service of your Microsoft based system or network in the New Orleans area, then call the knowledgeable, reputable Microsoft specialists at Onsite Computer Services, Inc. in New Orleans 504-469-6991.

You may also be interested in Onsite Computer’s Blog.

This New Orleans On-Site Computer Services post was provided by Eli Lucas. Eli can be reached at eli@onsitenola.com. On-Site Computer Services, Inc. serves the Microsoft computing needs of small businesses throughout the Greater New Orleans area including Uptown, Lakeview, Broadmoor, Mid-City, Metairie, Jefferson, Kenner, Westbank, French Quarter, and the Warehouse District.  Please visit our website at http://www.onsitenola.com.


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