Wireless Products
Intel® Wi-Fi Products
Could You Explain 64-bit and 128-bit Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP)?

Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP)* is not recommended for a secure Wi-Fi local area network (LAN) due to its inherent weaknesses. One of the main security risks is a hacker can capture the encrypted form of an authentication response frame, using widely available software applications, and use the information to crack WEP encryption. The process consists of an authentication request from the client, clear challenge text from the access point (AP) or broadband wireless router, encrypted challenge text from the client and an authentication response from the AP/router.

Once authenticated and associated with the AP/router, every WEP data frame is encrypted with an RC4 cipher stream generated by an encryption key. That key is comprised of a 24-bit initialization vector (IV) and either a 40-bit or 104-bit WEP shared key (passphrase) that is configured on the client and AP/router. Combining the IV and key results in 64-bit and 128-bit WEP, respectively, which are the terms used today. Some vendors formerly referred to these as 40-bit and 104-bit WEP because they excluded the 24-bit IV in their documentation.

This applies to:

Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N + WiMAX 6250
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6200
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6205
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6205 For Desktop
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6230
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6235
Intel® Centrino® Ultimate-N 6300
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N + WiMAX 6150
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 100
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 1000
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 1030
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 105
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 130
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2200
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2200 For Desktop
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2230
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 3160
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260 for Desktop
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-N 7260
Intel® PRO/Wireless 2200BG Network Connection
Intel® PRO/Wireless 2915ABG Network Connection
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection
Intel® WiFi Link 1000
Intel® WiFi Link 5300 and Intel® WiFi Link 5100 products
Intel® WiMAX/WiFi Link 5350 and Intel® WiMAX/WiFi Link 5150 products
Intel® Wireless WiFi Link 4965AGN
Intel® Wireless-N 7260

Solution ID: CS-025315
Last Modified: 01-Oct-2014
Date Created: 26-Dec-2006
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