IT firms admit struggle to secure wireless Lans


IT firms admit struggle to secure wireless Lans

Antony Savvas

Almost 66% of technology businesses plan to expand their wireless local-area network (WLAN) deployments during the next 12 months, but most admit they do not have adequate security, according to analyst firms Gartner.

The fact that many technology firms are struggling to get on top of wireless security illustrates the challenge facing other businesses intending to adopt wireless connectivity.

In a survey of 200 networking and business technology organisations in North America and Europe, 60% of respondents did not believe they had adequate security for their wireless environment.

Gartner analyst Rachna Ahlawat said, “Although wireless Lans are not a new endeavour, interest in them is still growing. Wireless Lans are becoming a standard part of enterprise networks, covering entire facilities, not just meeting rooms.”

But, warned Ahlawat, “As wireless Lans expand to the whole enterprise, concerns about security and network management are rising.

“We’ve gone from thinking of offices as network nodes, to considering each employee as a node on a wired network. Now, every major physical item the company owns is becoming a node on a wireless network.”

In the survey, 44% of respondents said the primary reason to deploy a WLAN was improving productivity with mobility.

In addition, 21% said the main reason was to provide access to places not possible to wire, and 13% thought that wireless networks were a less-expensive or simpler way to deploy Lan connectivity.

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