Wi-Fi Alliance Boosts Wireless Security
LAS VEGAS -- Signaling the next step in securing standard wireless LAN access points, the Wi-Fi Alliance on Tuesday unveiled its first certifications of products for compliance with the WPA, or Wi-Fi Protected Access, specification.
The products, including components and systems from Atheros Communications, Broadcom, Cisco Systems, Intel, Intersil, and Symbol Technologies, can interoperate using the WPA specification, the nonprofit organization announced at the
WPA was developed by the alliance using a subset of the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers)
For encryption, WPA has TKIP (Temporal Key Integrity Protocol), which constructs keys in a different way than does WEP. For access control, WPA will use the IEEE 802.1x protocol, a recently completed standard for controlling entry to both wired and wireless LANs.
WEP has come under fire for being too easy for electronic eavesdroppers to crack. The danger that poses has held back enterprise adoption of wireless LANs, according to industry analysts.
The vendors will be able to mark the certified products with the
It announced Tuesday a test program for
The alliance certified the following products for WPA interoperability:
Networking component maker Broadcom said it is already working with makers of wireless LAN access points and clients on products that will ship with certified WPA support. Broadcom makes transceivers for 11 mbps 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11a, and dual-band 802.11a/g wireless LAN systems. In its 54 mbps transceivers it also includes hardware acceleration for AES (Advanced Encryption Standard), which is not required for WPA but will be part of the 802.11i standard, said Jeff Abramowitz, Broadcom's senior director of marketing for wireless LAN products.