Networking & Wireless

General discussion

WEP on Motorola Surfboard SBG900

by psaulm119 / August 12, 2009 3:29 AM PDT

I am thinking of buying this wireless cable modem (the Motorola SB5100 I've had for five years is going out intermittently), but I've read that the security on it is 128-bit WEP. I have always heard that this has long since been compromised and that it is rather weak security. I'm surprised that Motorola would be selling a product with WEP years after its been hacked. Should I keep looking for another modem? Or am I missing something here?

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WEP is "no security"
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 12, 2009 4:57 AM PDT

The history is what it is. Let's just say that some devices don't support WPA so WEP even if it is insecure is better than no security at all. We all wish WEP was not an option.

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Brief summary
by psaulm119 / August 12, 2009 5:12 AM PDT
In reply to: WEP is "no security"

Would it be correct to say that a professional hacker could compromise my modem in minutes, but my neighbor trying to use my bandwidth could not, with WEP enabled--at least, not without knowing my username/password?

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I think the compromise is done to less than 2 minutes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 12, 2009 5:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Brief summary

And MAC filtering does not add any more security. I have never revealed the hack tool's name in this forum in spite of those that want me to "prove it." I will not make life anymore difficult than it is today.

The real issue about the bandwidth stealing is not the bandwidth. It's too likely they would download some movie, MP3 that your IP address would be logged as the offender and your life could get more interesting. Or a certain porn that is a free ticket to the slammer. It's all bad news and why I implore everyone to lock it down.
Bob

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Reminds me of a response by Bruce Shneier on this...
by psaulm119 / August 12, 2009 5:46 AM PDT

He was explaining why he leaves his network open. He said he had in the past used his neighbor's while he was shopping around for a new router--and also, if there were some surreptitious downloading, he would always have the excuse that his wireless network is open.

An interesting statement, though I think I'd still rather not have to deal with the authorities in this issue to begin with.

Always appreciate your responses in these forums.

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Think I'll save 60 bucks and just get the wired cable modem.
by psaulm119 / August 12, 2009 5:47 AM PDT

and get a wireless linksys router (WPA2 enabled) when I have a stronger need for this stuff.

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Sorry for the typo.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 12, 2009 10:16 AM PDT

I meant "down to two minutes."

I know some want people to leave the wifi connections open but the risk is too great in my opinion. Glad to see that you see the problem.
Bob

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