[OT] Does ad-hoc network depend on "security through obscurity ?"
quozl at laptop.org
Mon May 31 02:20:25 EDT 2010
On Sun, May 30, 2010 at 04:38:37AM -0500, Mikus Grinbergs wrote:
> But this was on channel 1. Can neighbors (or drive-bys) connect to
Yes. Depending on what you mean by "connect".
Anyone else in the vicinity  can obtain the laptop name  merely by
performing a passive scan .
Anyone in the vicinity  can associate with the network, can negotiate
an IP address using zeroconf, and could monitor the network packets and
see the laptop name , and obtain activity sharing data; e.g. a
transcript of Chat between two XOs.
> And what is my legal liability if they do?
That depends on your legal environment.
As Sascha pointed out: this same vulnerability is common to all laptops,
computers, and operating systems that contain support for open wireless
networks. There's no obscuring. I see these ad-hoc networks available
on my MacBook and can connect to them. I can't reach the internet
through them though.
The ad-hoc network mode does not depend on security by obscurity. It
simply has no security at all, apart from that afforded by user
 within radio range, which varies from metres to kilometers depending
on height above ground of each wireless device,
 the "Name" and "Color" as set on initial boot or using the Control
Panel (My Settings) page "About Me",
 "iwlist eth0 scan" or the equivalent, such as the what the
Neighbourhood View does on an XO, or the wireless menu on an Apple.
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