Nowadays, you will hardly walk a few meters without getting a new Wi-Fi notification message on your smartphone. Wireless network is the new trend in towns with schools, businesses and home owners all investing in Wi-Fi networks. Unfortunately, most of these wireless networks are password secured and the open ones are potentially dangerous to connect to. As a result, you either need to have the network’s keys or hack the wireless network to access internet.
What Wireless Hacking is?
Wireless hacking is simply gaining unauthorized access to a private wireless network. To hack a wireless network, you need to first identify and then exploit weaknesses in the network. Basically, there are two major weakness you will find in most wireless networks. One is poor configuration, either by using a weak passwords or poorly configured security setting. Secondly, there is poor encryption which is largely a problem to do with Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) or Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) security protocols.
Whether legal or illegal there are a number of reason you would want to hack a wireless network and the only way to do it, is to crack the network security protocol in place. WEP security protocol is generally weak and can be cracked in a matter of minutes. On contrary, Wi-Fi protected Access (WPA1/2) protocol is strong and the most preferred security protocol in most wireless networks.
The good news is that there are number of available programs designed to hack wireless network. These tools either exploit vulnerabilities in network encryption or use dictionary attacks to crack WEP/WPA protected wireless networks. In this article we will discuss some of the best tools for wireless password cracking including a few network analyzer tools to help you understand your Wi-Fi network and troubleshoot network problems.
Which are the best tools for Wireless Network hacking?
- Aircrack is a popular wireless hacking tool for a WEP/ WPA Wi-Fi cracking recommend for both professional hackers and amateurs. It recovers a network’s password by capturing packet data and running a sets of complex algorithms. Aircrack is only compatible with Linux based operating systems and is distributed as a Live CD or VMware image. Live CD is recommended for advance Linux users while VMware images is appealing to less skilled Linux users. Get Aircrack
- AirSnort is another brilliant wireless hacking tool for both window and Linux based operating systems. You can use it for 802.11b WEP cracking with guaranteed success. AirSnort monitors network transmission to capture crucial packets that would help reconstituted the decryption keys. It a free software which is easy to use for both experts and amateurs. You can download AirSnort for free from Sourceforge.
- Kismet is a classic 802.11 WEP/WPA cracking tool. It is designed to capture data packets in order to detect, analyze and intrude on hidden wireless networks. Kismet is built on client/server architecture and is available for windows Linux and Mac operating systems. It is compatible with all Wi-Fi cards that support rfmon mode. Get Kismet!
- Network Mapper (NMAP) – is a good tool for wireless network security auditing. It is capable of scanning large networks and using IP packets to determine various aspects of the network such as available hosts, services offered by the hosts, hosts’ OS version and type of firewall or filters in place. NMAP is an open source software recommended for both amateurs and advanced users.
- Wireshark is a network protocol analyzer capable of giving you the finest details of a wireless network. It does this by capturing packets and analyzing them on a micro level. On the downside, Wireshark requires deep understanding of network protocols to get any meaning information from the analysis. It might not be appealing to first time users and less skilled hackers.
- NetStumbler – You probably have heard about this security tool. It is one of the oldest network scanner for windows operating system first developed in 2004. NetStumbler will help you scan for open wireless access points, verify network configurations, detect unauthorized access to your network and identify locations with poor network. The only drawback is that NetStumbler can be easily detected by other network intrusion systems and only work with 32bit Windows OS. The tool is also out commercial support.
- InSSIDer is a premium Wi-Fi scanner for windows and Mac operating Systems. It is one of the best networking software to help you find open Wi-Fi access points, track signal strength – among other useful tasks. The tool will cost you around $19.9 but rest assured that is good value for your money. Get InSSIDer from www.inssider.com.
- WepAttack is an open source Linux tool good for cracking 802.11 WEP keys. It deploys a dictionary attack to test millions of words in order to obtain the right keys. It is easy to use and only requires a working WLAN card. On the downside, WepAttack may not be useful in cases where the network is secured with complex key combinations.
- Airjack is a brilliant packet injection tool. It is mostly used by hackers to cause denial of service attack and launch Man in the middle (MITM) attacks. Airjack hacks wireless networks by injecting forged de-authentication packets. Download Airjack from sourceforge.
- CloudCracker is an online password cracking tool for breaking WPA secured Wi-Fi networks. It uses an active dictionary with millions of words to get the right network keys (similarly to WepAttack). It is an easy to use tool even for the first time hackers. All you need is to upload the handshake file, enter the name of Wi-Fi you want to crack and start the process. It would take you less than 24 to get the security keys delivered to you via email. Visit www.cloudcracker.com to get it!
- IKECrack is an open source IPsec authentication crack tool designed to capture Internet Key Exchange packets. IKECrack first obtains the identity and secret Key combinations of the network then uses the credentials to hack into a wireless network. It is a good tool for cracking VPN networks.
- KARMA – This tool works in the background to obtain SSID and BSSID names of the wireless network. After obtaining the SSID names, KARMA mimics the legit access point acting more like a Man in the Middle (MITM).
- WepDecrypt is a wireless hacking tool for cracking 802.11 WEP keys. It uses an active dictionary attack to test millions of words in order to obtain the correct security keys. It relies on a key generator, distributed network attacks and other popular WEP attack techniques to crack wireless networks. wepdecrypt.sourceforge.net is the url you need to type in for having a look at it.
- Yersinia – It is brilliant network security tool that exploits vulnerabilities in Layers 2 network protocols. Yersinia is able to detect weaknesses in the following network protocols. Cisco Discovery Protocol (CDP), Spanning Tree Protocol (STP), Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP), Inter-Switch Link Protocol (ISL), VLAN Trunking Protocol (VTP) Dynamic Trunking Protocol (DTP among others. Get Yersinia from Sourceforge.
- OmniPeek is a great security tool for capturing and analyzing wireless network traffic. It’s effective in troubleshooting wireless networks in windows operating systems. The tool is easy to use and works with almost all network interface cards available in the market. The only drawback is that OmniPeek requires deep understanding of network protocols and may not be appealing to first time users and amateurs.
In a nutshell, we have discussed tools that will help you hack wireless networks with ease. Some of the tools will help you scan your network for unauthorized intrusion and troubleshoot network problems. We believe understanding these tools and how they operate makes you a better security gladiator. As a result, you will configure your network appropriately to avoid falling prey to the same network security pitfalls. Also, please lets us know in the comment section if we have left out a tool that you feel would have made it on the list.
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