Hackers Hitting The Streets

Colorado ranks fifth in the nation when it comes to identity theft crimes,
and to make matters worse thieves are finding new ways to tap into personal information via wireless networks. It's called Wardriving. All a hacker needs is a car, software that can be downloaded for free, and a laptop.

Downtown Grand Junction is home to many businesses, residential neighborhoods and wireless networks. 11 News Reporter Natalie Pallone drove around the area with Philip Winiarczyk who owns Network Guardian to get a sense of just how many networks were unsecured. They found approximately 150 networks that were using wireless options and out of those about 53 that were open. Open meaning a hacker could access the network and use it to gather personal information like financial records and social security numbers, they can even capture passwords to e–mail accounts.

Philip says if you just buy a router and take it out the package and use it – all of the default settings are set up so a hacker can get into it. He says you need to read all of the directions. If you don't understand the terminology, hire a professional to set up your wireless network.

To find out if your network is safe you can contact Phillip at 970-261-4832 or e-mail him at networkguardian@tds.net.