When you’re out and about, you want to go where the Wi-Fi is. But when you can’t get online, you may not have much choice but to wait until you get home or find a place that offers free Wi-Fi. If that’s the case, there are some things you can do to make sure your Wi-Fi connection is as secure as possible.
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First, look for a network with a lock icon next to its name. This means that it’s encrypted and secure—and that someone else shouldn’t be able to access your data if they were to try accessing the same network from their own device.
Second, check what kind of encryption method is being used by your network provider: WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access 2) is currently considered best practice for most secure networks.
Wireless networks and hacking
Wireless networks are based on IEEE 802.11 standards defined by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE ) for ad hoc networks or infrastructure networks. Infrastructure networks have one or more access points that coordinate the traffic between the nodes. But in ad hoc networks, there is no access point; each node connects in a peer-to-peer way.
Two types of vulnerabilities can be found in the Wireless LAN. One is poor configuration and the other is poor encryption. Poor configuration is caused by the network admin who manages the network. It may include a weak password, a lack of security settings, use of default configurations and other user-related issues.
Poor encryption is related to security keys used to protect the wireless network. These vulnerabilities exist because of issues in WEP or WPA.
WEP and WPA
WEP and WPA are the two main security protocols used in Wi-Fi LAN. WEP, or Wired Equivalent Privacy, is a deprecated security protocol that was introduced back in 1997 as a part of the original 802.11 standards. However, it was weak, and several serious weaknesses were found in the protocol. Now, this can be cracked within minutes.
A new Wi-Fi security protocol was introduced in 2003. This new protocol was Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA). While most routers currently use WPA or WPA2, a third version called WPA3 was certified a few years ago and is designed to replace the existing protocols.
To get unauthorized access to a network, one needs to crack these security protocols. Many tools can crack Wi-Fi encryption. These tools can either take advantage of WEP weaknesses or use brute force password guessing attacks on WPA/WPA2/WPA3.
Top tools for Wi-Fi hacking
Wireless hacking tools are of two types. One can be used to sniff the network and monitor what is happening in the network. The other kind of tool is used to hack WEP/WPA keys. These are the popular tools used for wireless password cracking and network troubleshooting.
Aircrack-ng is one of the most popular wireless password cracking tools that you can use for 802.11a/b/g WEP and WPA cracking. Aircrack-ng uses the best algorithms to recover wireless passwords by capturing packets. Once enough packets have been gathered, it tries to recover the password. To make the attack faster, it implements a standard FMS attack with some optimizations.
The company behind the tool also offers an online tutorial where you can learn how to install and use this tool to crack wireless passwords. It comes as Linux distribution, Live CD and VMware image options. You can use any of these. It supports most of the wireless adapters and is almost guaranteed to work. If you are using a Linux distribution, the only drawback of the tool is that it requires deeper knowledge of Linux. If you are not comfortable with Linux, you will find it hard to use this tool. In this case, try Live CD or VMWare image. VMWare Image needs less knowledge, but it only works with a limited set of host OS, and only USB devices are supported.
Before you start using this too, confirm that the wireless card can inject packets. Then start WEP cracking. Read the online tutorial on the website to know more about the tool. If you follow the steps properly, you should be able to successfully crack a Wi-Fi network protected with WEP.
Download Aircrack-ng: http://www.aircrack-ng.org/
Wifite is a Python script designed to simplify wireless security auditing. It runs existing wireless hacking tools for you, eliminating the need to memorize and correctly use the different tools with their various options.
Wifite2 is a complete rewrite of the original Wifite tool. It is designed to work on the Kali Linux and ParrotSec Linux distros. Before running Wifite, it is recommended to install their optional tools as they are essential for running some of the supported attacks.
Download Wifite2: https://github.com/derv82/wifite2
Kismet is a wireless network sniffer that works for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, software-defined Radio (SDR) and other wireless protocols. It passively collects packets being broadcast in its vicinity and analyzes them to detect even hidden Wi-Fi networks.
Kismet is supported on all operating systems (using WSL on Windows) and is actively supported. The last 2020 release significantly re-architected the system to improve performance and add new features.
Download Kismet: http://www.kismetwireless.net/
Wifiphisher is a tool designed to perform man-in-the-middle attacks by exploiting Wi-Fi association. By convincing wireless users to connect to the rogue access point, Wifiphisher provides an attacker with the ability to intercept and monitor or modify their wireless traffic.
Wifiphisher also enables an attacker to launch web phishing attacks. These can be used to collect user credentials for third-party sites or Wi-Fi network credentials. Additionally, Wifiphisher is designed to be modular, enabling advanced users to write custom code to expand its capabilities.
Download Wifiphisher: https://github.com/wifiphisher/wifiphisher
inSSIDer is a popular Wi-Fi scanner for Microsoft Windows and OS X operating systems. The inSSIDer wi-fi scanner can do various tasks, including finding open Wi-Fi access points, tracking signal strength and saving logs with GPS records.
inSSIDer works on a freemium model. Basic functionality is available for free, but certain features require a paid membership.
Download inSSIDer: https://www.metageek.com/products/inssider/
Wireshark is the network protocol analyzer. It lets you check what is happening in your network. You can capture packets live and inspect them at a high level or see the values of particular fields within a packet. It runs on Windows, Linux, OS X, Solaris, FreeBSD and others.
Wireshark is designed to be user-friendly but has a great deal of functionality under the hood. It is most useful if you have a strong understanding of network protocols and can effectively interpret the traffic that you are seeing.
Download Wireshark: https://www.wireshark.org/
CoWPAtty is an automated dictionary attack tool for WPA-PSK. It runs on Linux OS. This program has a command-line interface and runs on a word list that contains the password to use in the attack.
Using the tool is simple, but it is slow. That’s because the hash uses PBKDF2 with 4096 iterations to generate a potential passphrase from a network SSID and password. Since each calculation of PBKDF takes time, this makes a brute force password guessing attack very slow.
However, CoWPAtty does have a rainbow table designed to mitigate this issue. Since many routers have common SSIDs, pre-computed tables have been generated for these SSIDs and common passwords. If the target network is one of these, testing it against the precomputed dictionary is much faster.
Download CoWPAtty: http://sourceforge.net/projects/cowpatty/
AirJack is a Wi-Fi 802.11 packet injection tool. This wireless cracking tool is very useful in injecting forged packets and taking a network down via a denial of service attack. This tool can also be used for a man-in-the-middle attack on the network.
Download AirJack: http://sourceforge.net/projects/airjack/
Airgeddon is designed to be an all-in-one tool for security analysis of wireless networks. To accomplish this, it integrates several existing tools and provides a single command-line interface for all of them. This helps to reduce the complexity of performing Wi-Fi security audits because Airgeddon’s CLI walks you through the process and handles interactions with all of the underlying tools.
Download Airgeddon: https://github.com/v1s1t0r1sh3r3/airgeddon
OmniPeek is another nice packet sniffer and network analyzer tool. This tool is commercial and supports only Windows operating systems.
OmniPeek is included on this list despite being a commercial tool due to the extensive feature set. This tool is intended to be an all-in-one Wi-Fi network management solution and includes packet capture, protocol decoding, network diagnostics and troubleshooting and even playback and analysis of voice and video traffic for diagnostic purposes.
Download OmniPeek: https://www.liveaction.com/products/omnipeek-network-protocol-analyzer/
11. CommView for WiFi
CommView for WiFi is another popular wireless monitor and packet analyzer tool. It comes with an easy-to-understand GUI. It works fine with 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac networks. It captures every packet and displays useful information as a list. You can get useful information like access points, stations, signal strength, network connections and protocol distribution.
Captured packets can be decrypted by user-defined WEP or WPA keys.
This tool is basically for Wi-Fi network admins, security professionals, home users who want to monitor their Wi-Fi traffic and programmers working on software for wireless networks.
Download CommView: http://www.tamos.com/products/commwifi/
CloudCracker is an online password cracking tool for cracking WPA-protected Wi-Fi networks. This tool can also be used to crack different password hashes. Just upload the handshake file, enter the network name, and start the tool. This tool has a huge dictionary of around 300 million words to perform attacks.
Try Cloudcracker: https://crack.sh/
13. Kali Linux NetHunter
The tools discussed so far have been focused on wireless hacking from the desktop. However, the growth of mobile devices has also inspired the creation of several hacking tools designed for smartphones and similar devices.
Kali Linux NetHunter is one example of such an app. It is a fully open-source Android penetration platform that is designed to run on Nexus phones. In addition to Wi-Fi-focused tools, NetHunter also includes a complete Kali Linux toolset.
Download Kali NetHunter: https://www.kali.org/kali-linux-nethunter/
Best Wi-Fi Hacking Apps for Android
Here is the list of Best Wi-Fi hacking apps for Android:
1. WPA WPS Tester
WPA WPS Tester for Android is one of the most popular hacking apps for Wi-Fi, which was developed to scan Wi-Fi networks for vulnerabilities.
This famous application is known for its ability to break into security systems. It checks the connection with access points using WPS-PIN, which are calculated using various algorithms. This application requires Android 4.0 or higher to work.
Bruteforce mode is also available on this app. App also discovers if an Access Point with WPS enabled is invulnerable.
NOTE: you can test the PINs with this app, and you can connect, but you cannot see the password without root permissions.
WPA WPS Tester is available on Google Playstore.
Aircrack-ng is one of the best apps for hacking Wi-Fi networks available for Android. Aircrack-ng is an 802.11 WEP and WPA-PSK keys cracking program.
It implements the standard FMS attack along with some optimizations like KoreK attacks, as well as the PTW attack, thus making the attack much faster compared to other WEP cracking tools.
The popular Aircrack-ng security tool is one such tool that has been ported to Android. Running Aircrack-ng on Android isn’t tricky. The hardest part is getting a Wi-Fi chipset that supports monitoring mode.
You can download Aircrack-ng From GitHub by following the below link.
zAnti is a well-known app for hacking the Wi-Fi network that allows you to analyze risk levels on the Wi-Fi network.
With the help of zAnti, you can easily find out vulnerabilities in your Wi-Fi network. Its Wi-Fi scanner shows access points that use default password values and highlights them in green.
You can also use this application to kill the necessary connections, blocking access to any website or server. By displaying the methods that hackers use, you can identify security holes in your network and make appropriate corrections.
4. WPS Connect
WPS Connect is another best Android app for hacking Wi-Fi. This application works with many routers, just download this application on your phone and search for the wifi network. You can also view the saved wifi password from this Android app.
WPS can check your router is vulnerable to default pin or not. It includes additional algorithms known as Zhao Chesung (ComputePIN) and Stefan Viehböck (easyboxPIN).
5. Kali Nethunter
Almost everyone knows about the famous Operating System Kali Linux. The creators of Kali Linux create Kali Nethunter.
To use this application for hacking Wi-Fi, you need to run the Wifite utility on Kali. The Nethunter configuration interface is quite convenient and takes on all the difficulties of editing configuration files. It uses a custom kernel that supports Wi-Fi 802.11 injections, making Kali Nethunter a useful Wi-Fi hacking tool for Android.
6. Reaver For Android
The short name of Reaver For Android is RFA. RFA is a hacker app for hacking the Wi-Fi password. RFA is easy to use because it has a user-friendly interface.
It supports a monitoring mode that can be activated or deactivated at any time. Reaver independently discovers Wi-Fi routers with WPS support.
This application uses the brute-force PIN-codes of the WPS registrar and can recover WPA / WPA2 passphrase.
Reaver can receive the WPA / WPA2 passphrase of the target access point within 2–5 hours. Last but not least, Reaver for Android also supports external scripts. Thanks to its user-friendly interface
To use RFA, you also need to install bcmon.apk.
7. Router keygen
It is a well-known Wi-Fi hacking app that has been evolving, but basically, it serves to obtain Wi-Fi keys from networks that have not changed their password, that is, with a factory password. When starting the app, it will tell us which networks it supports and which not after doing a scan around us.
WIBR+ is one of the best Wi-Fi hacking apps for Android. WIBR + was created to test the security and integrity of Wi-Fi networks. Using brute force and dictionary attack.
Besides, the WIBR + Wi-Fi password cracking application also allows you to use custom dictionaries. To carry out dictionary attacks, depending on your priorities, you can carry out various attack options using lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
The time that WIBR + takes to crack a password depends on its complexity and the type of dictionary that you will choose.
Netcut is an application with which you can cut off the Internet connection of a specific device. Using a simple interface, you can get rid of unnecessary users on your network.
Its other features include displaying traffic used by the device, network names, and capturing the traffic of websites visited from other devices.
Please note that to work with Netcut, you need root access to your device.
Nmap for Android is a useful app for hacking Wi-Fi and viewing available hosts, services, packages, firewalls, etc.
Nmap for Android is useful for both root devices and regular Android devices. However, users without root access will not be able to use advanced features of the application, such as scanning SYN and receiving operating system signatures.
Its developers have already released a compiled binary version of Nmap with support for OpenSSL.
11. Kali Linux Nethunter
The Kali Linux NetHunter project is the first Open Source Android penetration testing platform based on Kali Linux. It is one of the best Wi-Fi hacking apps because it supports Wireless 802.11 frame injection, one-click MANA Evil Access Point setups, HID keyboard (Teensy like attacks), as well as BadUSB MITM attacks.
Kali NetHunter is maintained by a community of volunteers and is funded by Offensive Security. Kali Nethunter has an application store based on a fork of F-Droid with telemetry totally removed. The store has about 30 applications.
Here is the video on how to install Kali Linux Nethunter on your Android device:
Note: This article is written for educational purposes only. You are free to use these tools on your own network. Do not use these tools to hack other people’s Wi-Fi networks. Hacking the Wi-Fi of any person without his/her information is illegal.
DSploit is a collection of network analysis and penetration testing tools that are bundled into one application. dSploit is developed by Simone Margaritelli for the Android operating system.
According to the developers of the tool, this app provides the most complete and advanced toolkit to carry out tasks such as Wi-Fi scanning and router key cracking, Multiprotocol login cracker, Packet Forging with wake on LAN support, HTTPS redirection, Man in the Middle attacks, Session Hijacking, and many more.