January 27, 2011

Workshop to focus on wireless Internet security

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Concerned with who might be monitoring your every keystroke or hijacking your banking information? A security workshop next week at Southern Illinois University Carbondale will offer suggestions to keep your wireless Internet browsing and online transactions safe.

The SIUC Security Dawgs, a registered student organization, is hosting a security workshop from 2 to 4 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 5. The workshop is in Room 204B of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts Building, 1365 Douglas Drive.

The workshop is free, but donations will be accepted. Proceeds will go to the Security Dawgs Collegiate Cyber Defense competition team to assist with travel and related expenses to upcoming competitions.

A focus of the workshop will be on maintaining security when using wireless Internet connections, said Tom Imboden, an assistant professor in the School of Information Systems and Applied Technologies, and Security Dawgs faculty adviser.

From browsing Facebook to managing online banking transactions, Internet users “don’t’ want to be tethered by a network cable,” he said.

The workshop will show participants how to “surf the Web with no strings or wires attached, safely,” he said. The workshop will also include discussions on basics of wireless security and the potential dangers when not using a secure wireless connection.

Participants can bring their wireless routers for setup or protection verification, Imboden said. Other discussion areas will include anti-virus software and general safe Web browsing practices, he said.

Contact Imboden for more information or to register at 618/453-7296 or by email at timboden@siu.edu.

The Security Dawgs registered student organization has about 20 members; the 12-member team includes four alternates, Imboden said.

The team is preparing again for the Illinois Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition, set for Feb. 19. A first- or second-place finish assures the squad a spot in the Midwest Regional Cyber Defense Competition, March 25-26, at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills. The sixth National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition is April 8-10.