Friday, July 27

Seen any piggybackers outside your place lately?

We run a wireless set up at home. Two Dells for the kids' homework (yeah right) and two laptops for Susan and me and a printer - all on it.

Lately, our Internet bills have been over the top - my suspicion is that it's music, and not the Crosby, Stills & Nash kind - but the kids say it's me blogging.

So how do I find out if our home wireless network is safe from piggy backers and rogue devices? Is there any way of seeing if the neighbours or the strange cars filled with geeks who sit outside our place are plugging into our wireless network?

Well, it turns out there is.

This free program called RogueScanner is a great way to find out.

Run it on a PC attached to your wireless network. It does a network scan and finds any wireless devices attached to it.

For each device, it lists the unique MAC address (a kind of serial number), the IP address, the manufacturer if it can figure it out, and model number if it can find that.

It also tells you what kind of device it is, such as a printer, PC and so on. And it will also flag any suspect devices it finds.

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