One of the biggest concerns as the wireless world grows is that of safety of data particularly individual information. Many individuals do what they call war-driving to discover an open WiFi network to get their emails whilst traveling, although this is a typical practice, it is against the law. There are hacker groups and IT security conferences that people go to, exactly where the retailer type IT people also show up and talk about these issues. The ramifications of business information falling in the hands of a competitor or snooping opportunist hacker are very great. Many of us take several Wireless On-line Newsletters and read the white papers on the safety issues as well. Indeed this is a problematic problem for businesses.
I seem to recall sitting in a Wal-Mart parking lot with a Starbucks next door in a strip center in my motor home and getting the Grocery Shop Across the street, the gas station and a Mail Boxes Etc. Indeed I got a couple of other people as well, which seem to be encoded, but most were completely open, meaning I could begin surfing anytime I had felt like it. Getting T-Mobile Service I logged on legally to the method as usual, but I could have easily took up free bandwidth elsewhere that day.
I think that numerous people buy these OTC peripherals and Linksys type systems and then merely place them in and turn them on. I comprehend that 1 big Home Improvement Sore did this and has fixed their units, but they had been wide open. Many little businesses all about are open, but most likely do not care. Some purposely blast WiFi to improve customer base and do so on different separate air-gapped systems from their shop operations, if you take Bitpipe online you can get the latest white papers on these things. You ought to sign up for on-line safety white papers.
The FCW.com White Paper Library is powered by Bitpipe, Inc., the leading syndicator of in-depth Information Technology Literature. There was recently a case in Florida exactly where someone was "War Driving" to pick up WiFi signals and stopped in front of someone's home turns out he inadvertently loaded some programs and the icons ended up on the host computer as well. The police came and arrested him. In Silicon Valley this went on quite a bit, two-guys who kind of invented the idea went from company to business and did just that and then went into the business to pitch their services. Although this was great and a win/win, these days the FBI Higher-Tech Crimes Division is all over it.
In reality one current GAO report and several articles in Federal Pc Weekly, GovExec.com and other oversight newsletters are quite worried as more than 1/3 of all government wireless networks are somewhat unsecured. I have discussed this and had a conversation with a hacker turned safety computer consultant. Apparently WEP or other such encryption is not even close to secure.