By Nick Jones
At MWR we're always keen to foster new talent in the industry, so when Bournemouth University Cyber Security Society contacted us about running an event for them, we put together a version of our workshop on WiFi attacks and headed on down for an afternoon of fun exploiting vulnerabilities in the WiFi protocol suite.
The workshop consisted of an introduction to the technical side of WiFi, followed by an explanation of several potential attacks against different WiFi security protocols, including WEP, WPA/WPA2 and WPS.
Following on from each theoretical explanation of the attack (and a dire warning or two about the consequences of breaching the Computer Misuse Act), the participants launched their own attacks against the lab environment provided using a variety of open source tools in combination with the provided WiFi cards.
The students in attendance showed an intuitive grasp of many of the concepts, and all of the participants succeeded in completing each exercise successfully. Given the range of disciplines being studied by the students in attendance, we were impressed by the speed at which they picked up the material being taught.
In addition, a number of the students were able to diagnose many of the issues that occurred (such as locating and reloading the correct drivers to support packet injection) with little intervention from the MWR staff.
The solid turnout from the students within the society demonstrated that the university is both engendering interest in the cyber security industry and nurturing the talent of the students studying there.
Given all the dire portents about the shortage of skilled professionals in the security industry, it's fantastic to see such a promising range of students demonstrating both the aptitude and interest to go on to be the next generation of the information security workforce!
In our opening article we discuss how we see the problem space and what some of the challenges are so given all of that, what are we looking to achieve with this website.
As we said previously we don’t claim to know all the solutions but we are certainly trying things that will enable us to find them. Along the way we’ll learn lots of lessons, we’ll no doubt have a few false starts but we’ll also get some stuff right. It’s that journey that we’re going to share on this site, including all the initiatives and events that we’re planning to run to support it all.
We don’t know yet exactly what will be on this site but the one thing we’re certain of is that it will be thought provoking, philosophical, challenging and most importantly it will be fun and engaging. We’ll get techie at times, something we make no apology for, as well as extracting the concepts and key points that we encounter along the way.
We also want your help on our journey. We want you to tell us your thoughts and experiences of what we’re doing and hopefully some stories about how you’ve taken our ideas and turned them into your own projects, events and general awesomeness. We want to know the good, the bad and the ugly and to get involved please get in contact via Twitter and then keep coming back to this hub for more insight and information.
So hold on tight, this will be a wild ride for all of us.