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What is SSID Broadcast ?

SSID (service set identifier) is a function performed by an Access Point that transmits its name so that wireless stations searching for a network connection can 'discover' it. It's what allows your wireless adapter's client manager program or Windows XP's built-in wireless software to give you a list of the Access Points in range.

Having SSID broadcast disabled essentially makes your Access Point invisible unless a wireless client already knows the SSID, or is using tools that monitor or 'sniff' traffic from an AP's associated clients.

Using the default SSIDs poses a security risk even if the AP is not broadcasting it, here are some standard ones that can possibly be probed by potenital attackers:

101 (3Com)
Compaq (Compaq)
compex (Compex)
Default SSID
intel (Intel)
linksys (Linksys)
RoamAbout Default Network Name (Lucent/Cabletron)
tsunami (Cisco)
WLAN (Addtron)

Note that turning off SSID broadcast does not effectively protect the network from attacks, as network monitoring tools like Kismet and airodump-ng can still easily find the SSID, often within minutes.

  User Reviews/Comments:
by imskid - 2006-04-30 08:18
another standard/unsafe SSID: "any"
by Stephanie - 2006-08-18 18:22
ohh hi im tryin to connect my psp wirless internet but i asks me for the ssid what is that like what do i have to put ?? what is wlan what do i have to put there and what is wep??/
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