87

THE KANSAS LIFELINE

July 2018

WPA3 has 192-bit

security and new
encryption features that
will improve the privacy
of users in open
networks by creating
individualized encrypted
VPN data connections.
For the first time ever,
WPA3 will vastly reduce
exposure risk when using
open networks used in
public places like hotels,
restaurants, and airports
with individual
encrypted data on an
open network. This is a
HUGE improvement in
Security.

8.  Keep all routers, computers,

mobile phones, tablets or other
devices that connect to wifi updated.
Make sure all WIFI devices have the
latest updates that include a fix for
the WPA2 WIFI  'Krack' exploit.  

9.  Increase WIFI security by

activating the new Improved WPA3
(Wi-Fi Protected Access) network
encryption as soon as it becomes
available or purchase one of the soon
to be available new Routers with
WPA3.

10.  Keep Microsoft Windows and

AntiVirus programs up-to-date. Make
sure to allow updates. In Windows,
click the search bar on the bottom left
> type "Update" > click "Check for
Updates > click "Check for updates"
again in the Windows Update menu.
Also, Keep anti-virus programs, Anti
Malware tools and other protection
software up-to-date.

11. If using any of the new Voice

Activated Assistant devices like Alexa,
Echo, or Google Home, turn them off
when not is use or away. Security
experts at Symantec advise voice
command users against control of
security functions like door locks or
security systems. Turn Off permissions

to make Voice Activated purchases
and the DropIn feature that allows like
devices to auto connect to the virtual
assistant when within signal range. If
these voice activated devices are used
carelessly, the user might find
themselves victimized by an associate
or a stranger that manages to get
some voice samples recorded in a
public place or over the phone that
could later be employed to provide
Alexa or similar assistants with
instructions to benefit the thief. 

Of course, one could also follow the

Internet Security Safety rules of the
Wolf Creek Nuclear Power facility by
not allowing access to the Internet of
critical office computer systems and
devices. It's not a very acceptable
solution in today's hyper-connected
world for most of us, but, nonetheless,
that's a security solution that works. 

Enter Passwords, Credit Card
numbers, Payment Information or
personal information on any websites
not displaying HTTPS. The key here is
the S on the end, as it signifies that
this is the secure version of the
protocol which sends data between
browsers and websites. HTTPS
encrypts all the information that is
sent and means that even if a hacker
had access, the information would be
illegible and unusable to them. This is
the type of security that is used by
most financial and ecommerce
websites. Before sharing any sensitive
information, check for the little lock
icon on a browser screen and the
HTTPS: on the URL line (usually found
at the top left of the screen).

7.  Use a VPN (virtual private

network) to make even compromised
intercepted data useless to any third
party. A VPN is a heavily encrypted
connection between the user and the
VPN Service Server that can even
make activities on a public WIFI
network safe while we all wait for the
release of the new WPA3 security
encryption. Many of the AntiVirus
companies, as well as others, offer
VPN services for a small monthly or
annual fee.

One of the really scary things

discussed in the prior article was the
WPA2 WIFI security weakness to a
hacking attack called the Key
Reinstallation Attack or KRACK. This
allowed attackers to track traffic
between devices and a router or
access point. The KRACK attack
exposed nearly 'All' WIFI devices and
network data to possible interception.
In just the last four months, a whole
new generation of WIFI Routers have
been announced and will 'hit the
market' in the next few months that
address the security problem by
introducing the new improved WIFI
Alliance approved WPA3 encryption
system.

Of course, one could also 

follow the Internet Security Safety

rules of the Wolf Creek Nuclear

Power facility by not allowing

access to the Internet of critical

office computer systems and

devices. It's not a very acceptable

solution in today's hyper-

connected world for most of us,

but, nonetheless, that's a 

security solution that works. 

Merle Windler and his

wife Linda are owners 

of Thoroughbred Systems,

Inc., Topeka. The

company specializes in

utility billing for cities

and rural districts,

computer networking and

associated training.

Contact: merlewindler@yahoo.com