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Virgin Media shuts down 500 unsecured in-house wireless access points

Virgin Media has deployed a new corporate wireless network across 30 of its UK sites after discovering up to 500 staff members were using shop-bought routers to access unsecured wireless networks at work.

The communications services company, which provides digital TV, broadband, phone and mobile services, employs 20,000 people across 800 UK sites. The new wireless network, deployed last week, turned off up to 500 non-corporate wireless access points.

Colin Miles, UK corporate manager from Virgin Media, told Computer Weekly, "We had an old wireless network structure, which wasn't PCI compliant. The challenge was various people in the organisation had been down to PC World and bought wireless routers to access unprotected wireless networks."

"We needed to offer wireless capability and shut down non-corporate wireless solutions," he said.

Virgin Media worked with Cisco to deploy wireless capabilities and a secure wireless network to meet security standards.

"We've managed to secure all our corporate air space to ensure corporate data transmitted wirelessly is secure and less at risk," said Miles.

Miles admitted the 400-500 unsecured wireless access points were a massive risk, but said there were "no known issues" relating to data security breaches.

Virgin Media posted record sales in the second quarter of 2010, with sales increasing 7.1% between April and June this year.


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