Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Do you mean 
Reply
lewuposluv
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-02-2012

Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

Sorry I don't have the hardware revision handy.

Firmware is 1.52.0.  Model is WRT54GS.

 

I'm configured with WPA2-PSK/AES.  Broadcasting my SSID.  No MAC access filtering.

HTTPS access only to the config pages.  Custom (not default) password.  Remote management disabled.

 

Summary:

The router simply "forgot" its assigned SSID and reverted to broadcasting as "linksys".

It also ceased encrypting its broadcast.

I was able to log in and change it back.  It retained many of the OTHER settings I had previously configured.

What causes this?  Is it a known issue?  Is there a fix?

 

Details:

Two days ago, I noticed my client (laptop) could no longer see the usual SSID that I connect to on my home network.

However, there was a new SSID in the area, named "linksys", broadcasting UNSECURED.

Coincidentally, this new "linksys" access point had the exact same signal strength that my usual access point typically had.

So, I connected to it, you know, just to see.

I was only able to access the config pages at my custom IP address (not at x.y.0.1), prefixed with the "https://" scheme identifier.

And it didn't prompt for a password.  Hopefully because it recognized the cookie my browser still carried from the last time I logged in to it.  But maybe because it had temporarily dropped ALL of its security measures...

It was definitely my router.  Just, stripped of its usual encryption/authentication and its usual SSID.

So, I switched the SSID back to what it usually is.

And I turned the WPA2-PSK/AES encryption back on.

The router "remembered" my WPA2 passphrase, which it helpfully displayed to me as plaintext when I pulled down the "security mode" dropdown menu and selected "WPA2 Personal".

After re-configuring, it works as well as ever.

 

Is this a known security flaw in the WRT45GS?  Because....it seems like a fatal one, as far as network security is concerned.

Is it limited to one firmware release?  Is there a firmware upgrade to fix it?

(Again, I regret not having my hardware revision handy.)

 

Thanks.

Expert
Expert
Posts: 12,649
Registered: ‎07-16-2006

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

It's not security flaw. It's an old router beginning to loose it's memory. If some parts of the configuration get corrupted it will revert back to factory defaults. Thus if the part of the memory containing the SSID configuration gets corrupted it will revert back to "linksys".

Sometimes this problem can be cause by a power failure.

There is no fix for this. You can try to reflash the latest firmware in case it's a problem in the firmware flash memory. You can try to make a little change to the configuration once a month to have to router rewrite its configuration into the NVRAM.

However, if you run more often into this problem there is probably nothing you can do about it except replacing the router...
DrWattsOn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-03-2012

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

BUT: regarding SECURITY: ON THE CONTRARY:

A couple of weeks ago a security flaw has been discovered in the WiFi protocols: the Easy-Connect, Simple-connect, or whatever the manufacturers wish to call the One Button Push to creat a "Secure" connection, wherin the encryption of those devices uses a SHORTENED algorithym. This has been hacked, and can lead to incursions not only by someone stealing your bandwidth, but also by someone with the skill and computing power to change settings and access other computers on the network. This was reported in SoCal on KFI640 AM radio, the Leo LaPort show.

The issue is resolved on other non-cisco related routers, by turning off the router's service for this. And wouldn't you know, the most commonly used routers are Cisco-Linksys, and I can't remember which, but either they CAN NOT make this "service" stay turned off, or they cannot access it to administer a turn-off. With the service turned on I bet even a whitelist MAC filter won't be effective, not to mention not convenient. Another example of why I hate most engineers. They think 'cause they know math that they know how to design something for someone else to use. We're so deep into generations of College Graduate stupidity that I (and I'm no genius) know more than the alleged teachers. Sorry I crashed off topic. Linksys MUST be upgraded or they are all NOT SECURE.

DrWattsOn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-03-2012

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

Should've run spell check, "wherein", and I know it's spelled "rhythm" even with algo... !:smileywink:

Expert
sabretooth
Posts: 5,340
Registered: ‎11-11-2008

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

[ Edited ]

DrWattsOn wrote:

BUT: regarding SECURITY: ON THE CONTRARY:

A couple of weeks ago a security flaw has been discovered in the WiFi protocols: the Easy-Connect, Simple-connect, or whatever the manufacturers wish to call the One Button Push to creat a "Secure" connection, wherin the encryption of those devices uses a SHORTENED algorithym. This has been hacked, and can lead to incursions not only by someone stealing your bandwidth, but also by someone with the skill and computing power to change settings and access other computers on the network. This was reported in SoCal on KFI640 AM radio, the Leo LaPort show.

The issue is resolved on other non-cisco related routers, by turning off the router's service for this. And wouldn't you know, the most commonly used routers are Cisco-Linksys, and I can't remember which, but either they CAN NOT make this "service" stay turned off, or they cannot access it to administer a turn-off. With the service turned on I bet even a whitelist MAC filter won't be effective, not to mention not convenient. Another example of why I hate most engineers. They think 'cause they know math that they know how to design something for someone else to use. We're so deep into generations of College Graduate stupidity that I (and I'm no genius) know more than the alleged teachers. Sorry I crashed off topic. Linksys MUST be upgraded or they are all NOT SECURE.

 


 

The WRT54GS does not support WPS so it does not apply to this device. 

DrWattsOn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-03-2012

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

[ Edited ]

Thanks much for taking the time to reply. I will breathe a little easier, though I still wonder what the button is in the center of the router (on top): (reset?). I hope the users of the remainder of the Linksys router products will have a firmware update soon.

I had planned on purchasing a new Linksys router to make use of 802.11n, but will wait until I see recent firmware updates that address the issue. Until then I am going with White-listed MAC address filtering. All effective security seems to be a hassle.

Thanks again for the reassurance!

Expert
Expert
Posts: 12,649
Registered: ‎07-16-2006

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?


DrWattsOn wrote:

BUT: regarding SECURITY: ON THE CONTRARY:

A couple of weeks ago a security flaw has been discovered in the WiFi protocols: the Easy-Connect, Simple-connect, or whatever the manufacturers wish to call the One Button Push to creat a "Secure" connection, wherin the encryption of those devices uses a SHORTENED algorithym. This has been hacked, and can lead to incursions not only by someone stealing your bandwidth, but also by someone with the skill and computing power to change settings and access other computers on the network. This was reported in SoCal on KFI640 AM radio, the Leo LaPort show.


Don't you read this forum before posting? It's in these forums for weeks now. It's called "WPS". Cisco has acknowledged the problem and they have published the first firmware updates:

 

http://homecommunity.cisco.com/t5/Wireless-Routers/WPS-Vulnerability-status-update-for-Linksys-devic...

DrWattsOn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-03-2012

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

[ Edited ]

Well, I searched in subject for Wireless Security & WRT54G2 (not ... GS). This is the one of four results that was titled closest to my concerns. So, the answer to your question is "yes", except "no",  I had no intention of reading the entire forum. A previous reply mentioned that the WRT54GS doesn't have WPS. That's the first I noticed that the thread concerned the ...GS and not the ...G2. Now reading the manual, and as I suspected, the button on top of the G2 is WPS. Thank you for the link re the flaw.

Ali baba
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎06-29-2012

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

how can I put security on my wireless?

Expert
iamgiantherockstar
Posts: 1,527
Registered: ‎03-19-2009

Re: Fatal Security Flaw in WRT54GS?

Hi please refer to the link below for instructions:

 

Setting Up Wireless Security on a Linksys Router