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Rogue AP Detection: What Is It & Why Your WLAN Design Needs It

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Rogue AP Detection: What Is It & Why Your WLAN Design Needs It


Most IT Managers and IT Directors are asked to do a lot. From server support, PC support, to printer support and even application support, they have to wear many hats. Securing their wireless network is just one of those hats, a very critical hat but one of many none the less.

There are many requirements when it comes to your WLAN or RF design and having built-in security functions like rogue AP detection is one of them.

Here's an overview of what rogue AP detection is and why it's important that it's incorporated in your wireless network design.

What is a rogue access point?

According to Michael McNamee, Senior Network Engineer at SecurEdge Networks, a rogue access point is, "Any access point that was not authorized by you to be placed on your network."

In real world terms, this tends to be a consumer grade device that someone purchases and connects to the network. The reason someone would do this is to either provide themselves with a wireless connection at their work space or to fix what they feel is an inadequate wireless experience.

How do rogue APs impact the WLAN?

Rogue access points can impact your wireless network in many ways:

  • They can create security holes in your network
  • Impose unmanaged RF contention or interference, negatively impacting your Wi-Fi performance
  • If plugged in with a LAN instead of a WAN port they can inject DHCP to the network which can cause problems
  • They can generate help desk calls when users connect to them thinking they are valid APs and then cannot get to the proper resources due to VLAN differences, etc.

Why is rogue AP detection important to include in your WLAN design?

Security should always be your first priority when it comes to your wireless network design. Since rogue AP detection is an important component in securing your wireless network its vital that it be included from day one.

Rogue access point detection does two things, detection and mitigation. Whatever you decide to install on your network it has to have the ability (from the beginning of your RF design) to be able to detect and mitigate rogue access points.

WLAN design basics

Not all wireless network designs are created equal, it's a skilled endeavor that requires a lot of training and experience to be done properly. Every design should be largely based on security at its foundation, and this means having rogue AP detection.

At SecurEdge, we deliver affordable, robust, and secure wireless platforms – it’s all we do. If you have any questions about wireless network design or would like to discuss an upcoming project,please contact us here.

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