Japanese break wi-fi security in 60 seconds

Kobe, Japan – Japanese scientists took just sixty seconds to break the WPA encryption used in wireless routers. The previous record stood at 15 minutes.

Toshihiro Ohigashi of Hiroshima University and Masakatu Morii of Kobe University plan to reveal exactly how they did it at a conference on September 25 in Hiroshima.

The hack does not give total control over the wi-fi connection, but does enable reading and spoofing data packets, but the ease with which Wifi Protected Access (WPA) Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP) encryption was broken suggests that anyone concerned about security should be looking at moving to the more secure WPA2 with Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption sooner rather than later.

The attack relies on a PC and wi-fi access point being far enough apart not to see each other directly and placing an attack computer between them acting as a relay using the proper checksums to fool the network.

But for the moment, the newer WPA2 with AES encryption remains safe from attack.