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Trustwave to Deliver Briefing at Black Hat Europe 2009

Expert to Demonstrate Ease of Attacking Legacy 802.11 FHSS Wireless Networks


CHICAGO (April 2, 2009) -  Trustwave, the leading provider of on-demand data security and payment card industry compliance management solutions to businesses and organizations throughout the world, announces Rob Havelt, practice manager for penetration testing, will deliver a briefing at Black Hat Europe, April 14-17, 2009. Havelt is a member of SpiderLabs, the advanced security team at Trustwave responsible for incident response and forensics, ethical hacking and application security.

Havelt's presentation will demonstrate the ease of attacking legacy 802.11 FHSS networks, which are often seen as inherently secure due to the difficulty of obtaining off-the-shelf equipment for remote eavesdropping. This legacy wireless technology is still commonly used in warehousing facilities due to its robustness and support for inventory management equipment such as handheld barcode scanners and printers.

Penetrating an 802.11 FHSS Network is mistakenly believed to be financially and technologically out of reach for the common hacker, costing thousands of dollars and requiring a high skill set. However, using easy-to-obtain tools such as GNURadio and the USRP, Trustwave's Havelt will present code and techniques to penetrate an 802.11 FHSS Network, demonstrating the simplicity with which it can be done.

This demonstration will prove particularly important for those organizations that discount the risk 802.11 FHSS Networks pose to security. These access points, generally connected to the corporate Local Area Network (LAN), if compromised, could expose personally identifiable information such as social security numbers and/or cardholder data. Trustwave has found that oftentimes there are no controls between these networks and corporate LAN environments leaving a large hole for hackers to penetrate.

"This demonstration will prove to naysayers that these legacy wireless networks need to be reviewed for security issues and included in the scope for compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard if the entity stores, processes or transmits cardholder data," says Robert J. McCullen, chairman and CEO of Trustwave. "We've seen security firms ignore the need to scope these types of networks, giving erroneous advice to their clients and providing a false sense of security."

"Security consultants perpetuate a myth that these networks are inherently more secure than other WiFi networks because off-the-shelf hardware to monitor these networks at the physical layer is not readily available," says Nicholas Percoco, vice president and head of SpiderLabs for Trustwave. "This demonstration will change that level of thinking."

After demonstrating the practical attack methodology using real-life scenarios, Havelt will discuss the security issues surrounding these legacy networks and the importance of security controls beyond obscurity and ignorance.

About Trustwave
Trustwave is a leading provider of on-demand and subscription-based information security and payment card industry compliance management solutions to businesses and government entities throughout the world. For organizations faced with today's challenging data security and compliance environment, Trustwave provides a unique approach with comprehensive solutions that include its flagship TrustKeeper® compliance management software and other proprietary security solutions including SIEM , WAF , EV SSL certificates  and secure digital certificates . Trustwave has helped hundreds of thousands of organizations-ranging from Fortune 500 businesses and large financial institutions to small and medium-sized retailers-manage compliance and secure their network infrastructures, data communications and critical information assets. Trustwave is headquartered in Chicago with offices throughout North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia. For more information, visit https://www.trustwave.com .