Originally Posted by camilian
DO NOT do any banking, email, or even log into a site over wifi. I hate to be a doomsayer. But after looking into my own wifi security I have found that it is very easy to break a wifi password, and even more scary to put a computer between you and the internet (man in the middle attack) so that all our info goes through the attacker's computer while accessing the internet. I plan on making some videos soon to explain how it works and show you what you can do to protect yourself (vpn), but for now... just don't do it! Plug in that Ethernet cable!
Sorry to shoot you down but it's a little incorrect.
I'll assume you are referring to man-in-the-middle attacks and ARP poisoning / spoofing and such like...
1 - Wifi isn't weak, the encryption method is.
WEP is "crackable" very quickly, even with a secure password.
A weak WEP key can be cracked in under 3 seconds. Stronger passwords just require more packets to be sniffed.
WPA2 is only really "crackable" if a weak password is used or a massive network conducts a rainbow table attack.
2 - Most banks use SSL encryption which makes a man-in-the-middle attack very unlikely unless further exploitation is used to spoof the SSL cert and domain name and a lot of skill with passthroughs and what not... Which is very, very, very difficult and requires the hacker to be within close range.
3 - Using a VPN can actually make your network less secure if you don't know what you're doing as it requires opening ports and the like.
4 - Windows OS and program exploits are far more likely to get your network compromised than a direct wifi attack.
@bizcard: Software won't and can't help.
Originally Posted by davshirley
Many years ago I saw a security expert build a device that could "sniff" network traffic on a wire by watching (optically) the flashing network activity LED on the switch port. Sure it was not very elegant and required a line-of-sight position to the switch but the point is that he could read the traffic without leaving ANY trace that it was happening. His little demo caused some of the major switch manufacturers to add circuitry to the led flash circuit so that it doesn't flash in a 1:1 ratio to the bits as they come in.
^Sounds like BS to me. Unless it was done in the mid 80s.
I use online banking, email, and a lot more using wifi... You just have to know what you're doing:
1 - Make sure any important site is accessed via https
2 - If using online banking, use https and see if they offer second factor authentication. Most have a system linked to your card and PIN number.
3 - Change your router to from WEP to WPA2 if supported. If unsupported, upgrade!
4 - Change your WiFi password to be secure (https://www.grc.com/passwords.htm
Just a side note, but if you were aware how insecure your bank card is, you would never take it out of your pocket! That doesn't mean you should never use it.