Smartphones and laptops are constantly sending Wi-Fi radio signals, and many of these signals can be used to track us. In this guide, we'll program a cheap IoT device in Arduino to create hundreds of fake networks with common names; This will cause nearby devices to reveal their real trackable MAC address, and it can even let an attacker take over the phone's data connection with no warning.
Due to weaknesses in the way Wi-Fi works, it's extremely easy to disrupt most Wi-Fi networks using tools that forge deauthentication packets. The ease with which these common tools can jam networks is only matched by how simple they are to detect for anyone listening for them. We'll use Wireshark to discover a Wi-Fi attack in progress and determine which tool the attacker is using.
Identifying vulnerable devices and services on a target router can be difficult without leaving logs and other traces of an active attacker on the network. However, there is a way to covertly decrypt and view Wi-Fi activity without ever connecting to the wireless network.
In my Wireshark article, we talked a little bit about packet sniffing, but we focused more on the underlying protocols and models. Now, I'd like to dive right back into Wireshark and start stealing packets.
Wouldn't it be nice to just sit at your buddy's house, plug into his network, and see exactly what he's doing? What if it was as easy as that? What makes packet sniffers like Wireshark such potent tools is that a majority of local area networks (LANs) are based on the shared Ethernet notion.
Here at Null Byte, we've spoken a lot about securing and anonymizing traffic. This is a big deal. With all of today's business taking place electronically via computers, we need to be secure when on-the-go. A lot of businesses don't even train their employees to secure their computers to protect from various threats. Here are a few things that should always happen when doing business on computers:
So you want to know what that person who is always on their phone is up to? If you're on the same Wi-Fi network, it's as simple as opening Wireshark and configuring a few settings. We'll use the tool to decrypt WPA2 network traffic so we can spy on which applications a phone is running in real time.
When joining a new network, computers use the Address Resolution Protocol to discover the MAC address of other devices on the same network. A hacker can take advantage of ARP messages to silently discover the MAC and IP address of network devices or actively scan the network with spoofed ARP requests.
In a previous guide, I demonstrated how to extract images from a security camera over Wi-Fi using Wireshark, provided you know the password. If you don't know the password, you can always get physical with the Hak5 Plunder Bug. Using this small LAN tap, we can intercept traffic like images from a Wi-Fi or IP security camera if we can get physical access to the Ethernet cable carrying the data.
If you want to get started sniffing Wi-Fi networks, you usually need to start with a wireless network adapter. But thanks to a Wi-Fi sniffing library written in Arduino and the ultra-cheap ESP8266 chip, you might not need one. For less than $10 in electronics, you can build a tiny Arduino Wi-Fi sniffer that saves Wireshark-compatible PCAP files and fits anywhere.
It's common for IoT devices like Wi-Fi security cameras to host a website for controlling or configuring the camera that uses HTTP instead of the more secure HTTPS. This means anyone with the network password can see traffic to and from the camera, allowing a hacker to intercept security camera footage if anyone is watching the camera's HTTP viewing page.