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Issue #2001 - 14 (Apr. 2001)
(Updated April 4, 2001)


Microsoft’s New Wireless OS to Support Wireless Security

Microsoft has announced its forthcoming Windows XP operating system will support an enhanced wireless security standard. The company says that the new OS will make it easier and safer for PCs, laptops and handheld devices to connect to the Web wirelessly.

Cisco Systems, 3Com, Compaq Computers, IBM, Dell Computers, and Intel are supporting the new standard, also called 802.1x.

Industry analysts are saying that Microsoft Windows XP addresses some of the security issues that UC-Berkeley computer scientists found in wireless networks based on the wireless standard Wi-Fi or 802.11b, according to The New York Times.

Back in February university researchers found security holes in wireless networks that could let hackers intercept and alter transmission passing through networks.

The Microsoft Windows XP OS enables individuals with laptops to get a different password every time they connect to a wireless network rather than using just one password, which was manually inputted by an IT administrator, making the connections secure, said Bill Rossi, vice president and general manager of Cisco wireless networking operations. Mobile workers can use the same password across multiple access points throughout their workplace.

Tom Laemmel, product manager for Windows at Microsoft, told The New York Times, "If you were using a notebook at work and went to the airport, it wouldn’t automatically think you were back at the office. It offers hands-off configuration to connect up to wireless networks."

Microsoft will begin shipping Windows XP during the second half of this year.

For more information: http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/

Mobileinfo Comments and Advisory: Ensuring wireless security is a continuous process.  however, it is good to see Windows XP fix some of the earlier problems.  Let there be no misunderstanding.  XP is literally an OS platform that allows software security houses to create more hacker-proof implementations.

Note: This news release may contain forward-looking statements. Readers should take appropriate caution in developing plans utilizing these products, services and technology architectures.  All trademarks used in this summary are the property of their respective owners.

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