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Showing posts from February, 2011

Brevity is the Soul of Wit (But Not the CWDP Study Guide)

The CWDP Study Guide was recently released. The certification is valuable and the study guide is great as a reference, but as a book it is just about unreadable.


Certified Wireless Design Professional (CWDP) is a new certification from the CWNP Program, a group that creates and manages vendor-neutral WLAN certifications. The CWNP Program has long had a Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) and Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP) certifications, and here in 2011 they are adding the CWDP and Certified Wireless Analysis Professional (CWAP) certifications.

The spirit of these certifications is that WiFi professionals often work in very specific disciplines, so the CWNP Program has a certification track for most industry professionals. Work for an equipment vendor? You probably want CWAP. An integrator? Probably CWDP. The NSA? CPP. (I jest, I jest. And if any NSA people read this blog, let me request the pain-free truth serum in advance.)

The CWDP exam is the next exa…

Chiggity-Check Your Phone (With a Sniffer)

It should come as no surprise that many WiFi-enabled mobile phones sometimes exhibit behavior that makes them vulnerable to attack. In at least one case, you can use a WiFi sniffer to view such behavior so that the proper changes can be made to your phone.


When a WiFi device associates to an access point, it must first go through the process of Discovery so that it can decide which AP is best (based on SSID, signal strength, etc.). Discovery is done either by listening for Beacon frames or transmitting Probe Request frames in hopes of eliciting a Probe Response frame. The Discovery process reveals the same information about an access point (SSID, channel, rates, security, etc.) whether it is through a Beacon or a Probe Response, it's just that the probing process can be faster because the station can initiate it at any time.

The problem with the Probe Request/Response sequence is that it could lead to an attack. Hackers running sniffing software (for the types of nefarious purpose…