Lesson 2: How to build a secure wireless infrastructure

In Lesson 2 of Wireless Security Lunchtime Learning, you'll learn how to build a secure wireless infrastructure by understanding the myriad security standards and features that Wi-Fi products boast, as well as how traditional wired network devices and configurations can be applied to a WLAN.

In Lesson 2 of Wireless Security Lunchtime Learning, you'll learn how to build a secure wireless infrastructure by understanding the myriad security standards and features that Wi-Fi products boast, as well as how traditional wired network devices and configurations can be applied to a WLAN.

   Webcast: From the ground up: Creating a secure wireless infrastructure
   Tip: Getting from here to there: WPA2 migration strategy
   Tip: Using VLANs to compartmentalize WLAN traffic
   Tip: The role of VPN in enterprise wireless
   Tip: The ins and outs of AP placement
   Quiz
   About the Instructor

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Wireless Security Lunchtime Learning Home

Lesson 1: How to counter wireless threats and vulnerabilities

Lesson 2: How to build a secure wireless infrastructure

Lesson 3: How to implement secure access

Lesson 4: How to use wireless IDS/IPS

  

Webcast: From the ground up: Creating a secure wireless infrastructure
Length: 20 minutes
Many WLANs grow organically, morphing from pilot projects into loose-knit production networks. But, like castles built of sand, these WLANs lack the firm foundation required to support a truly secure network. Today's Wi-Fi products implement many different security standards and features: WEP, WPA, WPA2, 802.1X, VPN, VLAN. This webcast explains these alternatives in a clear, concise fashion so that you can choose Wi-Fi products that fit within a network architecture that has been designed with security in mind.

VIEW THIS WEBCAST

  

Tip: Getting from here to there: WPA2 migration
WEP has been cracked, WPA is a bandage, and your CSO recommends upgrading to WPA2. Great, but that's just not going to happen overnight. How do you migrate your installed base of legacy equipment? This tip recommends a workable strategy for migration, permitting peaceful coexistence between old and new devices with divergent security features.

READ THIS TIP

  

Tip: Using VLANs to compartmentalize WLAN traffic
Virtual LANs have long been used within enterprise networks to create logical workgroups, independent of physical location or LAN topology. This tip describes how to use these same VLAN capabilities, found in both wired and wireless devices, to tag and compartmentalize Wi-Fi traffic, supporting your company's security and traffic management policies.

READ THIS TIP

  

Tip: The role of VPN in enterprise wireless
Early WLANs frequently re-used remote access VPN clients to overcome the limitations of WEP and related security concerns. But, given improvements in Wi-Fi security, do VPNs still have a role to play in enterprise wireless? What are the practical benefits and limitations of using a VPN over wireless? This tip discusses where to make best use of VPNs and how to smooth over conflicts between WLAN roaming and VPN tunnels.

READ THIS TIP

  

Tip: The ins and outs of AP placement
Many installers make the mistake of treating WLANs just like Ethernet, placing APs in locations that facilitate outsider access to corporate networks. But, from a security perspective, WLANs should be treated like the Internet -- a network composed of trusted and untrusted users. This tip offers network topology and physical positioning recommendations for safer AP deployment.

READ THIS TIP

  

Quiz
Find out how much you learned in Lesson 2.

TAKE THE QUIZ

  About the Instructor

Lisa Phifer owns Core Competence Inc., a consulting firm specializing in network security and management technology. Lisa has been involved in the design, implementation and evaluation of data communications, internetworking, security and network management products for over 20 years. At Core Competence, she has advised large and small companies regarding security needs, product assessment and the use of emerging technologies and best practices. Before joining Core Competence, Lisa was a Member of Technical Staff at Bell Communications Research where she won a president's award for her work on ATM Network Management.

Lisa teaches about wireless LANs, mobile security and virtual private networking at many industry conferences and on-line webinars. Lisa's WLAN Advisor and Wireless-To-Go columns are published by SearchNetworking.com and SearchMobileComputing.com where she is a site expert on wireless LANs. She also has written extensively about network infrastructure and security technologies for numerous publications including Wi-Fi Planet, ISP-Planet, Business Communications Review, Information Security and SearchSecurity.com.

  
This was first published in April 2006

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