Types of Wardriving software?

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Wardriving software detects and maps wireless access points, including packet sniffers, traffic analyzers, signal strength and security monitors, encryption cracking, and network attack software. It can be used with a laptop, Wi-Fi card, and GPS device to locate vulnerable access points and rogue hotspots. Network administrators also use it to locate dead or weak spots in signal coverage. Some people use the encryption cracking features to break into secure networks. Most software is available for Microsoft Windows®, Linux®, UNIX® and Apple® Mac® OS/X®.

Wardriving software falls into several categories, the most basic of which is detecting and mapping wireless access points. Packet sniffers and traffic analyzers, as well as signal strength and security monitors, are also types of wardriving software. Encryption cracking and network attack software are also related. This software is usually used in wardriving with a laptop, a Wi-Fi card and a GPS (Global Positioning System) device. It is often used by people who roam neighborhoods and wireless networks looking for vulnerable Wi-Fi access points.

All that is needed to use most wardriving software is some type of laptop with a Wi-Fi interface. The computer can be a laptop, personal digital assistant (PDA), or other type of portable system. As long as your wireless card is compatible with your chosen wardriving software, your internal antenna should work. However, an external one should significantly increase the number of access points discovered. A serial GPS device can be used to triangulate and map identified points.

Most wardriving software is available for Microsoft Windows®, Linux®, UNIX® and Apple® Mac® OS/X®. Much of it is also open source code. One notable exception is Netstumbler, a common Windows® utility that listens and searches for publicly visible access points. It doesn’t try to connect, sniff, or crack anything, but it is effective at detecting and logging network beacons. An open source Linux® variant called Kismet can find hidden networks and sniff, log and download packet data.

When a GPS device is connected to the serial port, a system can use wardriving software that maps the detected access points. Instead, the GPS can be connected to a Universal Serial Bus (USB) port; the port bridge software can route its data to the legacy serial port as needed. Mapping software can triangulate the location of a wireless access point from different directions. It can also communicate with websites that track known access points in the region and add newly discovered points to sites.

Network administrators often use wardriving software to locate unintentional or unauthorized hotspots. These rogue backdoors through the corporate firewall can be major security issues. This software is also used to locate dead or weak spots in the signal coverage of known access points.

Some people use the encryption cracking features of wardriving software to break into secure networks. This software is designed to analyze traffic in order to crack Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) keys. Some programs simply use dictionary attacks or even other brute force methods. Once the keys are known, carefully crafted packets can be injected into the traffic stream to penetrate networks. These packets can exploit vulnerabilities in the underlying network protocols and trigger denial of service attacks.

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