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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Networking Question

    Howdy all. Just ran into something that I've not seen discussed before. I'm working out of town, and staying in an apartment complex in which the office maintains a wireless setup. I can get a connection okay, but their setup is an open one. This makes me nervous (I know it's VERY insecure), even though I run anti spyware; anti virus; and firewall software. Here's the question - I'd like to know if I have any options to secure my connection by hardware means, and get a better signal (some type of repeater, maybe?) from my end?? Many thanks in advance.


  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Thanked 7 Times in 7 Posts

    Re: Networking Question

    There is very little you can do to secure this. The kinds of risk that you are exposed to are many and subtle. For example someone could spoof the DNS server and redirect your network access. This could enable them (for example) to put up fake versions of the most common bank web sites and send you there instead of to the real ones. There is also very little you can do to stop other people capturing information about everything you do on the Internet.

    One option might be to establish an encrypted, authenticated, connection across a VPN connection to a proxy server. You could then browse the web securely. A quick search for "Secure Proxy" turned up a number of options, such as


  3. #3
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Silicon Valley, USA
    Thanked 93 Times in 89 Posts

    Re: Networking Question

    If your firewall has the concept of "zones," like ZoneAlarm, then of course this local network should be treated as "internet" rather than "trusted." This should limit attacks into your computer from your neighbors.

    As Stuart notes, the access point may offer bad DNS entries and the best way around this is to connect to a trusted site by IP address and use that for all your web usage. For example, your office VPN might be a good choice, if you have that option. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    As for the signal, in some cases the building materials will thwart that. In others, a more powerful antenna (even a Pringles can) will help.

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