15 Free (or Almost Free) Wi-Fi Security Testing Tools

@https://twitter.com/candicelanier

Candice writes for several publications, including The Christian Post, Red State, The Black Sphere and Patriot Update. She is the Science & Tech Editor at the Minority Report Blog and the founder and Editor-in-Chief at Front Lines. She's also the founder of Candice Lanier's Tech News and works as a computer consultant. Additionally, Candice is an antiques dealer.

Wi-Fi Security Testing Tools

Attempting to “hack” into your own wireless network can help you better understand Wi-Fi security vulnerabilities and how to protect against them. Here are some Wi-Fi hacking techniques and the tools — nearly all free — you can use for penetration testing. These tools will help you uncover rogue access points, weak Wi-Fi passwords, and spot other weaknesses and security holes before someone else does.

Stumblers and Sniffers: Vistumbler

Wi-Fi stumblers can detect nearby APs and their details, like the signal level, security type, and MAC address. You might find APs set with weak WEP security, which can be easily cracked, or possibly rogue APs setup by employees or others that could be opening your network up to attack. You can use wireless sniffers to capture raw network packets sent over the air. You could import the captured traffic into other tools, such as to crack encryption. Vistumbler is an open source Windows application that displays the basic AP details, including the exact authentication and encryption methods, and can even speak the SSID and RSSI. It also displays graphs of signal levels. It’s highly customizable and offers flexible configuration options. It supports AP names…

Stumblers and Sniffers: Kismet

Kismet is an open source Wi-Fi stumbler, packet sniffer, and intrusion-detection system that can run on Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and BSD. It shows the AP details, including the SSID of “hidden” networks. It can also capture the raw wireless packets, which you can then import into Wireshark, TCPdump, and other tools. In Windows, Kismet only works with CACE AirPcap wireless adapters due to the limitation of Windows drivers. It does, however, support a variety of wireless adapters in Mac OS X and Linux.

Stumblers and Sniffers: Wifi Analyzer

Wifi Analyzer is a free Android app you can use for finding APs on your Android-based smartphone or tablet. It lists the basic details for APs on the 2.4-GHz band, and on supported devices on the 5-GHz band as well. You can export the AP list (in XML format) by sending it to email or another app or take snapshot of the screens. It also features graphs showing signals by channel, history, and usage rating and also has a signal meter feature to help find APs.

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