Landshark Information Technology

Wi-Fi is getting a major security update

Devices that use Wi-Fi to communicate with one another have been doing so using the same security protocol WPA2 since 2004. In recent news a major security flaw was discovered named KRACK that allowed hackers near full control over the data being carried over the wireless network. This coupled with some other security flaws meant that it was only a matter of time till a new system would be deployed to help fix the issues. Wi-Fi Alliance which is a board that oversees and regulates the standards surrounding most things Wi-Fi has recently announced that it is now certifying devices that use the new WPA3 security protocol. 

WPA3 has improved over its predecessor in quite a few ways. Firstly is has massively improved its ability to resist being cracked by brute force attacks in two ways. The protocol now uses 192-bit encryption, and it strictly limits the number of password attempts that can be made before locking out the system helping protect networks that have weak passwords. In the event that a hacker does gain access to the correct password, it limits what data they can see. 

One of the things that the Wi-Fi Alliance is looking to do with WPA3 is streamline the process of connecting new devices to the network. With the rise in popularity of smart appliances such as lights, locks, thermostats it can be a challenge to get them connected to the network due to their lack of displays. WPA3 looks to fix this by improving upon the one button connection system allowing users to simply press a button and connect the device. The use of QR-codes has been announced allowing manufactures the ability to create devices that lack even a sync button.

Several companies have already begun submitting products to Wi-Fi Alliance for WPA3 approval including Qualcomm which will integrate the new protocol on all of its flagship chips used in smartphones. While it will take some time for WPA3 to become the mainstream standard, we should except to start seeing more products on the market supporting WPA3 in the coming months.

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