Tips and Tricks

Is Wardriving Ilegal?

Wardriving refers to the process of looking for wireless networks while moving through a certain location in a vehicle. It requires the use of equipment that typically comprises the use of a GPS device as well as a laptop.

What’s the reason for driving while warding?

In the context of cybersecurity the aim of wardriving is to identify vulnerable networks that can be exploited. Wardrivers can gain entry to networks, and take personal data or use them to carry out criminal activity. In other instances, the wardrivers aren’t those who execute the attacks on their own. However, they may share the details of these networks via third-party apps and websites.

Wardriving can be done for various reasons that range from the innocent–such as research, education or site surveys, as well for fun–to the criminal that involves hackers tracking their network, with the intention of stealing sensitive information such as bank account numbers.

It’s not limited to automobiles. Other variations of the method include warbicycling as well as warwalking, warjogging training in war, and warskating. All of these, are, as you’ll be able to guess because of their titles, require various modes of transportation. Each has advantages and disadvantages, including that they can encompass different types of terrain and geographical density.

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The term “wardriving” originated in the context of wardialing an exploit technique used in the movie WarGames. Wardialing entails dialing all the numbers in a sequence, usually within a particular area code in search of computers, modems as well as fax machines, and servers.

How do wardriving works?

Wardriving requires a mix of hardware and software in order to work. They typically comprise:

  • A mobile device like a smartphone, laptop, or tablet
  • Software to ward off security of networks
  • An wireless networking card as well as an antenna that is high-gain
  • GPS, typically via a smartphone, or a standalone wardriving device

To begin, wardrivers have to own an laptop or smartphone with the wardriving program to execute the wardriving assault. The software for wardriving will assist users crack Wi-Fi passwords as well as unlock the networks they discover. Attackers also make use of GPS to pinpoint the location of Wi-Fi networks.

Once they have identified vulnerable networks the attackers who are wardriving will then upload this information to their software for wardriving and then create an outline of the weak networks.

Is wardriving a crime?

Although the process isn’t in itself illegal however, certain aspects aren’t legally clear. For instance, the act of cataloguing and searching Wi-Fi networks is completely legal, since this is considered to be a passive activity and considered a form of collecting data. The problem comes the moment that wardrivers are actively communicating with Wi-Fi networks. In this case “interaction” is considered to be access to an untrusted network.

Going one step further is the idea of piggybacking which is the act of connecting to and using another’s Wi-Fi connection without permission or knowledge. The lawful status of piggybacking differs around the globe, ranging from unclear to unlawful.

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The U.S., a commonly referenced example of what constitutes the term “unauthorized access” to an internet-connected network can be found in the court case State v. Allen, 260 Kan. 101 (1996). In this case, the court distinguished between approaching the network and trying for access. The court also decided that accessing a network without permission was permissible, but trying to gain access without permission isn’t.

In the case of wardriving, one theory is that scanning nearby Wi-Fi hotspots are legal, while trying to gain access to hotspots isn’t.

What tools do wardrivers make use of? (software & hardware)

Software or apps for directing traffic

Wardrivers frequently use software applications that allow them to find Wi-Fi networks that are nearby to test signal strength and even bypass security of networks.

Laptop or smartphone

Wardrivers require a smartphone tablet, or laptop in which they can install the software for wardriving mentioned above to control the entire driving process.


Its GPS system will pinpoint the exact location of the compromised network. The wardriver uses the GPS using an Android phone or a an individual wardriver.

An antenna and wireless network card

Wardriving antennas enable wardrivers to spot weak networks. Most often, they’ll install an antenna to their vehicle while they move about in search of weak networks. In other instances, wardrivers might use their phones’ built-in antenna.

Tools for generating maps

Wardrivers will also utilize crowd-sourced databases to produce maps of Wi-Fi networks that are discovered.

How can I safeguard myself from being a victim of driving while warding?

To protect yourself from wardriving, it comes down to protecting the Wi-Fi connection. There’s good news: there’s plenty that you could do in order to secure your network from attack and keep wardrivers off your network.

Make use of a VPN router

The best method to safeguard your Wi-Fi from hackers is to install the VPN router. While traditional routers allow you to establish a password for your Wi-Fi network but using a VPN router goes one step further, and secures all data that flows between and among all devices that are connected with your internet. This protects them from hackers and your online service providers and even government.

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Shut off your router if you’re not using the router.

Your router broadcasts Wi-Fi signals whenever it’s switched on. To keep hackers from getting access to your network, you must turn off your router when you’re not making use of it.

Change the default username and password.

Your router comes with an administrator interface that you can modify your network’s settings by with your default password and username. The routers of the same manufacturer typically have the same default passwords and it’s not difficult for wardrivers to sign into your admin panel. Once they’re in, they’re able to perform a variety of things, from blocking you from the router using a different password, to taking over your network.

Use multi-factor authentication

If you are able, turn on multi-factor authentication on the router’s settings page. Every attempt to log in will trigger an alert, and make sure you are aware of any unauthorised access. However some routers are not capable of the use of multi-factor authentication.

Make use of the most secure security protocol for your network.

As the owner of the Wi-Fi access point you must always utilize WPA2 since it’s the most reliable standard.

Create an additional guest network

A guest network allows your visitors and guests access to only the internet, and absolutely nothing else! It’s an access point, and is not connected to the main network that the device is connected to. This means that wardrivers and visitors aren’t able to access or view your devices. In addition, they won’t cause harm to your devices or system in some way.

Install an firewall

Firewalls are able to prevent unauthorised entry to networks. They also add a layer in terms of protection for your networks as well as the devices that are that are connected. Find out more about the way firewalls work.

Keep your devices up-to-date

Maintaining your devices up-to-date can eliminate vulnerabilities and fix bugs. This includes the router’s software and the operating system on all devices that are linked to it.

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