Cisco Wireless LAN Security / Edition 1

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Expert guidance for securing your 802.11 networks

  • Learn best practices for securely managing, operating, and scaling WLANs
  • Comprehend the security-related technological underpinnings of WLANs
  • Explore new security protocols in 802.11i and WPA and learn how they prevent attacks
  • Review centralized deployment models for wired/wireless integration
  • Deepen your knowledge of defense by understanding the tools that attackers use to perform reconnaissance and to attack authentication and encryption mechanisms
  • Understand how to design secure WLANs to support enterprise applications with the new standards and practices detailed in this book
  • Reference the next generation authentication standards and protocols
  • Find out about mobility, hotspots, and campus wireless networks
  • Grasp Open Authentication, MAC-based authentication, shared key authentication, EAP authentication protocols, WEP, WPA, and 802.11i

Cisco Wireless LAN Security is an in-depth guide to wireless LAN technology and security, introducing the key aspects of 802.11 security by illustrating major wireless LAN (WLAN) standards that can protect the entire network. Because a WLAN is less effective as an isolated piece of the network, this book emphasizes how to effectively integrate WLAN devices into the wired network while maintaining maximum security.

Cisco Wireless LAN Security covers the spectrum of WLAN security, including protocols and specifications, vulnerabilities and threats, and, especially, deployment patterns and design guidelines. With a unique combination of theory and practice, this book addresses fundamental wireless concepts, such as WEP, and innovations, such as EAP, switching, and management. Each chapter includes detailed illustrations, checklists, design templates, and other resources. You will also find generic wireless deployment patterns based on real-world customer installations and functional examples of architecture, design, and best practices.

Whether you currently design, configure, implement, and maintain WLANs or simply want to explore wireless security issues, Cisco Wireless LAN Security has everything you need to understand how to create a seamlessly secure, impenetrable 802.11 network.

This book is part of the Networking Technology Series from Cisco Press┬┐ which offers networking professionals valuable information for constructing efficient networks, understanding new technologies, and building successful careers.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781587051548
  • Publisher: Cisco Press
  • Publication date: 9/27/2004
  • Series: Networking Technology Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 402
  • Product dimensions: 7.64 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Meet the Author

Krishna Sankar is a distinguished engineer at Cisco Systems, Inc. For the past 20 years, he has held positions in software architecture and development and industrial engineering. Krishna is an author, speaker, and technology evangelist.

Sri Sundaralingam is a technical marketing manager in the Wireless Networking Business Unit at Cisco Systems. Sri has extensive customer contact and is responsible for developing and marketing enterprise and carrier networking solutions using the Cisco Aironet Series of wireless LAN products.

Andrew Balinsky is a network security test engineer at Cisco Systems. His introduction to computer security was through the Air Force Information Warfare Center, where he did everything from tracking hackers to developing security software.

Darrin Miller currently works as a security researcher at Cisco Systems. He has been in the networking industry for more than 15 years and has authored several white papers on network security.

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Table of Contents

1. Securing WLANs Overview.

WLAN: A Perspective.

Wireless LAN Components and Terminology.

WLAN Standards.

WLAN Security.

WLAN Security Domain Conceptual Model.

Navigating This Book and Contexts.


2. Basic Security Mechanics and Mechanisms.

Security Mechanics.

Confidentiality Mechanisms.

Encryption Algorithm Strengths and Weaknesses.

Integrity Mechanisms.

Key Management.

Authentication and Identity Protocols.

PPP Authentication Protocols.

The TACACS+ Protocol.

The RADIUS Protocol.

The Kerberos Protocol.




3. WLAN Standards.

Standards Organizations, Position, Context, and Influence.


Wi-Fi Alliance.

Wireless LAN Association.

Hardware/Radio/Waves and Modulation.

FCC Regulations.

Radio Technologies in 802.11.

Brief Discussion on Relevant Standards.

IEEE 802.11.

IEEE 802.11b.

Channel Allocation.

IEEE 802.11a.

IEEE 802.11g.

IEEE 802.11f.

IEEE 802.11e.

IEEE 802.11k.

IEEE 802.11h.

Light Weight Access Point Protocol.


4. WLAN Fundamentals.

WLAN: Elements and Characteristics.

WLAN Basic Topology.

WLAN Building Blocks.



WLAN State Diagram.

Basic Choreography.









Reason and Status Codes.



5. WLAN Basic Authentication and Privacy Methods.

Authentication Mechanics.

Open Authentication.

Trust Model and Assumptions.

Supporting AAA Infrastructure.

Applications, Vulnerabilities, and Countermeasures.

Auditing and Accounting.

MAC-Based Authentication.

Trust Model and Assumptions.

Supporting AAA Infrastructure.

Auditing and Accounting.

Applications, Vulnerabilities, and Countermeasures.

Shared-Key Authentication.

Protocol Choreography.

Trust Model and Assumptions.

Supporting AAA Infrastructure.

Auditing and Accounting.

Applications, Vulnerabilities, and Countermeasures.

WEP Privacy Mechanics.

WEP Processing Model.



6. Wireless Vulnerabilities.

Attacker Objectives.

Attack Trees.

Reconnaissance Attacks.

Sniffing and SSIDs.

Sniffing Tools.

Wardriving and Its Tools.

DoS Attacks.

Disassociation and Deauthentication Attacks.

Transmit Duration Attack.

Authentication Attacks.

Shared-Key Authentication Attacks.

MAC Address Spoofing.

WEP Keystream and Plaintext Recovery.

Keystream Dictionaries.

Methods for Recovering RC4 Keystreams.

Uses for Recovered Keystreams.

WEP Key Recovery Attacks.

Dictionary-Based Key Attacks.

The Fluhrer-Mantin-Shamir Attack.

Attacks on EAP Protocols.

Summary of 802.1x and EAP.

Dictionary Attack on LEAP.

PEAP Man-in-the-Middle Attack.

Rogue Aps.

Ad-Hoc Mode Security.


7. EAP Authentication Protocols for WLANs.

Access Control and Authentication Mechanisms.

The Three-Party Model.

Layered Framework for Authentication.


EAP Frames, Messages, and Choreography.

EAP Authentication Mechanisms.


PEAP Frame Format.

PEAP Arbitrary Parameter Exchange.

PEAP Choreography.

802.1x: Introduction and General Principles.


Cisco LEAP (EAP-Cisco Wireless).


EAP-FAST Frame Format.

EAP-FAST Choreography.


8. WLAN Encryption and Data Integrity Protocols.

IEEE 802.11i.

Encryption Protocols.


TKIP (802.11i/WPA).


CCMP Encapsulation.

CCMP Decapsulation.

CCM Algorithm.

Key Management.

Master Key Establishment.

Key Hierarchy.

Key Exchange.

Security Associations.

WPA and Cisco Protocols.

Cisco Protocols.


Security Problems Addressed.


DoS Attacks.

Shared-Key Authentication Attacks.

MAC Address Spoofing.

Message Modification and Replay.

Dictionary-Based WEP Key Recovery.

WEP Keystream Recovery.

Fluhrer-Mantin-Shamir Weak Key Attack.

Rogue Aps.

Security Considerations of EAP.


9. SWAN: End-to-End Security Deployment.

Overview of SWAN Security Features.

WLAN Deployment Modes and Security Features.

SWAN Infrastructure Authentication.

Radio Management and Wireless Intrusion Detection.

SWAN Fast Secure Roaming (CCKM).

Local 802.1x RADIUS Authentication Service.


10. Design Guidelines for Secure WLAN.

WLAN Design Fundamentals.

WLAN Security Policy.

Device Support.

Authentication Support.

Network Services Placement.


Application Support.

Management of the Aps.

Radio Coverage Design.

Multigroup Access.

General Security Recommendations.

AP Recommendations.

WLAN Client Recommendations.

Infrastructure Recommendations.

New WLAN Deployments.

Embedded Security Solutions.

VPN Overlays.

Combined VPN and Embedded Security Design.

Integration with Existing WLAN Deployments.

WPA Upgradeable, WEP Only, and Pre-WEP Devices.

Integrated Deployments.

SWAN Central Switch Design Considerations.

Admission Control Design.


11. Operational and Design Considerations for Secure WLANs.

Rogue AP Detection and Prevention.

SWAN Rogue AP Detection.

Manual Rogue AP Detection.

Network-Based Rogue AP Detection.

WLAN Services Scaling.

RADIUS Best Practices.

VPN Best Practices.

Enterprise Guest Access.

Enterprise Guest Access Requirements.

Enterprise Guest Access Design.


12. WLAN Security Configuration Guidelines and Examples.

Cisco Enterprise Class Wireless LAN Products.

Cisco Aironet AP1200 Access Point.

Cisco Aironet AP1100 Access Point.

Cisco Aironet AP350 Access Point.

Cisco Aironet BR350 Bridge.

Cisco Aironet BR1410 Bridge.

Cisco Aironet 802.11b/a/g and Cisco Client Extensions-Enabled Devices.

Cisco Secure Access Server.

Cisco Wireless LAN Solution Engine.

Catalyst 6500 Wireless LAN Services Module.

WLAN Security Methods: Configuration Guidelines and Examples.

Navigating the HTML GUI Configuration Pages.

IOS CLI Configuration Examples and Guidelines.

SWAN Nonswitching Deployment: Configuration Guidelines and Examples.

Basic WDS Configuration.

Fast Secure Roaming (CCKM) Configuration.

RF Aggregation Configuration and Rogue AP Detection.

Local Authentication Configuration (RADIUS Fall-Back Service).

Securing Bridge-to-Bridge Links.

Secure WLAN Management Configuration Guidelines.

SWAN Central Switching Deployment: Configuration Guidelines and Examples.


13. WLAN Deployment Examples.

Large Enterprise Deployment Examples.

Large Enterprise WLAN Deployment Example I.

Large Enterprise WLAN Deployment Example II.

Vertical Deployment Examples.

Retail WLAN Deployment Example I.

Retail WLAN Deployment Example II.

University WLAN Deployment Example.

Financial WLAN Deployment Example I.

Financial WLAN Deployment Example II.

Healthcare WLAN Deployment Example I.

Healthcare WLAN Deployment Example II.

Manufacturing WLAN Deployment Example.

Small and Medium Businesses and SOHO WLAN Deployments.

Medium Enterprise WLAN Deployment Scenario Example.

Small Office WLAN Deployment Example.

SOHO WLAN Deployment Scenario Example.

Hotspot (Public WLAN) Deployment Examples.

Coffee Shop WLAN Hotspot Deployment Example.

Airport WLAN Deployment Example.


Appendix A. Resources and References.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2005

    Title may be misleading... content is excellent

    OK, the title does indeed tell a great deal about this particular book: However, the 'Cisco' tag may be misleading. Cisco WLAN Equipment and even some terminology is used throughout this text. With a Vendor's badge on the cover and name in the title it prepared me for an extremely biased volume of configurations and presentations on Cisco specific technology. This text greatly exceeded a book with that good but narrower approach. A great plus of this particular text is the detail it provides on technology and design criteria which is applicable to WLAN security regardless of technology vendor. It has taken the place of my best vendor agnostic text as the first reference I grab. Kirshna, Sri, Andrew, and Darrin have delivered the subtitle 'Expert guidance for securing your 802.11 networks' in 13 chapters. Vast majority of their 395 pages of text and diagrams are not only applicable but extremely valuable to anyone charged with designing, implementing, and administrating WLANs in today's security conscious environment. Guidance on secure WLAN design is far more than delivery of some cookie cutter equipment configs. The authors obviously recognized this and exceeded this reader's expectation. Their guidance was achieved by delivering sufficient detail on all the technologies and interdependencies that are required to deliver WLAN Security. They did not pave a single configuration which would have had too narrow an audience. They provided the foundation which enables, even seasoned WLAN engineers, to deliver for a wide variety of business requirements. My copy has loads of dog-eared pages. Those pages mark specific paragraphs which have been very valuable in customer and support organization presentations. If you're interested in designing secure WLAN which fits your customer's needs and performs well. Then, you should pick up a copy of this text. I'm looking for an update from these guys which includes some of the additional features and functions available in the latest 'Cisco' WLAN technologies from both Aironet and Airespace teams. Great book for a WLAN designer, implementor, operator, or manager of any of those resources.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2005

    Great coverage of Wireless LAN Security

    The title is definitely in alignment with the content. A basic-to-intermediate discussion of security, as it applies to wireless LANs, is presented in this book. When I completed the book, I certainly had a much better understanding of wireless LAN security fundamentals ¿ both generically and with a Cisco slant. The book has 4 co-authors, this may explain the healthy perspective given to the subject of wireless LAN security. I know the number of chapters of a book can¿t always tell much of the story, but in the case of the 13 chapters contained in this book ¿ spread out over almost 400 pages ¿ I immediately felt that no single chapter would contain an amount of information that may be overwhelming as far as being able to retain my focus. The 2 final chapters comprised the greatest number of pages for any single chapter, and rightfully so. It would have been a compromise of the completion of the overall material to have limited the number of pages involving configuration examples and deployment scenarios. I really appreciated chapter 2. This chapter was titled ¿Basic Security Mechanics and Mechanisms¿, and the content was just as the title suggested. The subject matter discussed security without any connection to wireless LANs. With ¿Security¿ being a complete topic all by itself, it was beneficial to have a little introduction to some generic security fundamentals before blending this topic with wireless networking. If the subject of computer/network security is not your forte, then you¿ll be served well with this brief exposure. Chapters 3 and 4 were a welcomed addition because they provided a ¿warm-up¿ to wireless networking. The authors, in my opinion, did a very good job in not assuming that the reader would be a seasoned veteran of wireless networking. With chapters 2, 3 and 4 leading the way, the groundwork was set for a solid comprehension for the remainder of the book. So, it is in chapter 5 -- ¿WLAN Basic Authentication and Privacy Methods¿ -- where the discussion of security for wireless LANs really begins. Once again, the title of the chapter is in sync with the content. What¿s provided is some light exposure to security methods. The information in the previous chapters really help to digest this chapter¿s material. This chapter is one of the ¿key¿ chapters in the book¿s presentation of wireless LAN security the foundation to the discussion of wireless LAN security begins here. The remaining chapters up to chapter 11 contained more in-depth discussion of security in the wireless LAN. I was pleased to see a discussion on the Wireless Domain Services (WDS), Wireless LAN Solution Engine, and Cisco Structured Wireless Aware Network (SWAN). While there¿s plenty of information at Cisco¿s website regarding these mechanisms, including the information in the context of the book content enhanced my understanding. I don¿t believe this is a book that is intended to prepare for any Cisco-related certification not that that was suggested anywhere to begin with. However, the reason for my comment is because there are none of the traditional questions at the end of each chapter to test chapter comprehension. So, if you want to test your understanding or memory, you¿ll have to create your own questions as your read through each chapter. There will be a number of terms that may be unfamiliar to some readers, so I¿ll encourage you to note those as you read each chapter. The book contains no glossary for you to reference terms -- all nice and neat, in alphabetical order. The book is for someone with at least a Cisco Certified Network Administrator (CCCNA)-level of knowledge. Certainly if the reader has a fair understanding of wireless networking, the focus can be exclusively placed on wireless LAN security. I would not recommend this book as a first-read to someone who doesn¿t have an understanding of wireless networking -- unless they¿re going to read only chapters 3 and 4. Again, chap

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