Hotel shared wireless and security

Discussion in 'Cisco' started by Gregg Hill, Apr 30, 2005.

  1. Gregg Hill

    Gregg Hill Guest

    Hello!



    Several hotels that I have been to provide wireless Internet access and have
    an un-encrypted wireless signal. Some of them are wide open for literally
    anyone to use (shame on them!) and others require some sort of
    authentication (using a RADIUS server?) to get onto the system, but their
    signal is still un-encrypted. I was recently at a Ramada Inn and their
    wireless access required a login password via Greenlink, but once on line,
    the connection showed as unsecured in Windows XP.



    The question I am most often asked regarding security is whether or not the
    guests' wireless communications are securely encrypted. Is it possible for
    wireless communications to be secure in a hotel environment using shared
    wireless access without end-user intervention in the setup process?



    I am interested in providing hotels with wireless Internet access for their
    guests. What I would like to have is a solution that authenticates via
    RADIUS or other means, and automatically turns on encryption on the guests'
    connections. No guest (or outsider) should be able to sniff another guest's
    wireless connection. Is that even possible?



    Gregg Hill
     
    Gregg Hill, Apr 30, 2005
    #1
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  2. In article <TXPce.15827$>,
    Gregg Hill <> wrote:
    :The question I am most often asked regarding security is whether or not the
    :guests' wireless communications are securely encrypted. Is it possible for
    :wireless communications to be secure in a hotel environment using shared
    :wireless access without end-user intervention in the setup process?

    Hmmmm... Tricky indeed, but plausible.

    The key is to either intercept or block all direct http:// requests that
    the user types in, and issue a http:// redirect to an https:// cgi script
    that proxies the request. The proxie would be on a wired
    connection, so the unencrypted actual data transfer is done
    off-air. To make things easier, any URL in the result should
    be rewritten in terms of the https:// redirector, so that
    if the user clicks a link even the request will be encrypted.


    Or, you could save a bunch of work and just go look at ZyAir's
    HotSpot. I don't recall the exact technology, but it has
    the effect of the above -- an encrypted link automatically
    gets interposed without requiring any client reconfiguration.
    --
    History is a pile of debris -- Laurie Anderson
     
    Walter Roberson, Apr 30, 2005
    #2
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  3. In article <d50l8h$1ag$>,
    -cnrc.gc.ca (Walter Roberson) wrote:

    > In article <TXPce.15827$>,
    > Gregg Hill <> wrote:
    > :The question I am most often asked regarding security is whether or not the
    > :guests' wireless communications are securely encrypted. Is it possible for
    > :wireless communications to be secure in a hotel environment using shared
    > :wireless access without end-user intervention in the setup process?
    >
    > Hmmmm... Tricky indeed, but plausible.
    >
    > The key is to either intercept or block all direct http:// requests that
    > the user types in, and issue a http:// redirect to an https:// cgi script
    > that proxies the request. The proxie would be on a wired
    > connection, so the unencrypted actual data transfer is done
    > off-air. To make things easier, any URL in the result should
    > be rewritten in terms of the https:// redirector, so that
    > if the user clicks a link even the request will be encrypted.


    That might solve the problem for web browsing, but what about things
    like email?

    --
    Barry Margolin,
    Arlington, MA
    *** PLEASE post questions in newsgroups, not directly to me ***
     
    Barry Margolin, May 1, 2005
    #3
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