There have been several warnings in the news recently about a serious vulnerability in the encryption that is used to secure WiFi connections. This vulnerability impacts all WiFi enabled devices including routers, tablets, computers and Internet of Things devices like wireless web cameras and all must be updated.
Some vendors, like Microsoft and Apple, were notified about this vulnerability before the general public and are working on updating the software in their devices. Systems running Windows 7-10 have already had patches released so, if you're receiving updates, you're already protected on those machines.
Mac desktops running MacOS, iPhones, iPads and Apple Watches will be patched shortly but are currently still vulnerable.
Very few Android devices have been patched because each individual cellular carrier has to push the updates for each of their devices.
Just because your device has been patched doesn't mean that you are safe because the wireless device you are connecting to may not have been.
- Make sure that you update all of your devices.
- Some router manufacturers have released patches and that list is growing so please keep checking your home router manufacturer's website to determine when an update is available and follow their instructions on how to apply it.
- I strongly recommend that Android and Apple users disable WiFi on their devices and use only the cellular or hard wired connections until their device has been updated.
- When using WiFi you should always make sure that the services you are connecting to are secure/encrypted (for example websites that use https:// instead of http://).
- You can use a VPN to increase the security of your connection.
- Use a wired or cellular network connection whenever working with confidential or private information.
If you have any questions, please submit a work order and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
Thomas J. Vosseler
Executive Director of Information Technology
School of Arts and Sciences
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Scott Hall 226A | 43 College Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901