Wireless Security

Open authentication – no security or encryption.

With WEP (PSK):

  • Client tries to authenticate.
  • AP replies with challenge text.
  • Client replies with auth string
  • Authentication is approved or rejected by AP.

802.1x – default state of being is NO.

  • Client PC providing credentials to be authenticated is the supplicant
  • The AP asking for credentials is the authenticator
  • The server validating the credentials authentication server (ACS, ISE, etc)
  • Protocol used between the authenticator and the authenticating server is RADIUS.
  • Provided the supplicant passes authentication, the authenticating server can also send a unique key to be used for encryption between the AP and the client for this wireless session.

EAP – Extensible Authentication Protocol

  1. LEAP (Lightweight) – AAA server and the client authenticate each other.
  2. FAST (EAP-Flexible Authentication via Secure Tunneling) – AAA server and the client authenticate each other via a secure tunnel using a PAC (Protected Access Credentials).
  3. PEAP (Protected EAP) – AAA server users digital certificate.  Client uses username and password.
  4. EAP-TLS (Transport Layer Security) –





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