Every modern, protected Wi-Fi network is vulnerable, warns government cyber watchdog

A top federal government cybersecurity watchdog issued an advisory on Oct 16, warning users to update their devices to protect against a newly discovered vulnerability that affects nearly every modern, protected Wi-Fi network. The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team's announcement comes after a security expert at the University of Leuven in Belgium published findings that showed that a widely used encryption system for wireless networks could give attackers an opening to steal sensitive information such as e-mails, chat histories and credit card numbers.

The exploit would allow hackers to eavesdrop on Internet traffic between computers and wireless access points. The findings are significant because of the wide range of devices that could be affected. "The attack works against all modern protected Wi-Fi networks,” Mathy Vanhoef said on a website he created to share his research. “Depending on the network configuration, it is also possible to inject and manipulate data. For example, an attacker might be able to inject ransomware or other malware into websites.”


Every modern, protected Wi-Fi network is vulnerable, warns government cyber watchdog Vulnerability Note VU#228519 (DHS warning)