Hidden Risks of Wi-fi

Wireless Newsfactor has an article about the Hidden Risks of Wi-Fi. The article points out that most people are focusing on the prevention of unauthorized access through wireless access points and on the encryption of the data being sent wirelessly. However, insufficient attention is being paid to the risks that wireless equipped laptops may present.

In particular, the internal wireless connection on such laptops may have been configured (by default or intentionally) for ad-hoc mode, rather than infrastructure mode, which can make it easy for strangers to connect to that computer’s file system or to connect through the laptop to the wired network that such laptop may also be connected to. With respect to the second issue, I don’t think laptops with two network connections (wired and wireless) will route data between such connections unless some configuration work is performed in order to activate such functionality. However, the first issue is a concern. In any event, the article makes a good point that users should routinely turn off any wireless functionality when not in use.