This chapter covers wireless security—what it is, how it works, how it is configured, what threatens it, and what policies can be designed to secure it. Wireless networking has limitations, involves some risks, and requires defense techniques, as you learn in this chapter. All network architectures, including the wireless networking sector of an organization’s network, should be based on sound security policies. These policies are designed to address all the weaknesses and threats that can occur in today’s large, wireless TCP/IP-based networks.

There is no doubt that mobile computing is booming. Users want to keep their mobile devices connected to the network at all times so that productivity is no longer limited to areas where a physical network connection is located. Users can now move from place to place, computing when and where they want. This section should help you understand the basics of wireless local-area networks (WLANs) networking. WLANs are defined by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) organization with the 802.11 standard for wireless Ethernet. Standard WLANs that are based on the 802.11 IEEE standards provide mobility to corporate network users while maintaining access to network resources at all times and locations within the building or campus.

Reproduced from the book Network Security Fundamentals. Copyright © 2005, Cisco Systems, Inc. Reproduced by permission of Pearson Education, Inc., 800 East 96th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46240. Written permission from Pearson Education, Inc. is required for all other uses.