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Wireless Devices

All wireless devices connected to the Shepherd University network must be capable of connection via Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA or WPA2) Enterprise, not Personal encryption.

As noted above, information security is only as strong as its weakest link. The lack of a physical connection between a computer and other network resources presents a particular challenge, as anyone with the proper equipment can easily eavesdrop on the network traffic flowing between the wireless computer (or smart phone) and the access point. Therefore all data transmitted wirelessly must be strongly encrypted.

It is well known in information technology circles that wireless network connections encoded via WEP (Wired Equivalent for Privacy) are very weakly encrypted and should not be considered secure. Obviously the same is true for any wireless connections not using an encryption method. The presence of a proxy server using SSL (such as a hot-spot captive portal page) is not an adequate substitute. As of March 2010, WPA2-Enterprise encrypted traffic is adequately secure. Certain modes of WPA, WPA-Enterprise, is subject to brute-force decryption, although we still permit WPA-Enterprise encryption on our network.

All devices manufactured after September 2003 and carrying a Wi-Fi logo or certification are capable of WPA-Enterprise or WPA2-Enterprise. Devices manufactured prior to this date may be capable of WPA-Enterprise with firmware upgrades; please check with your device’s vendor. Please note that privately-owned devices are still subject to this Directive pertaining to connectivity to Shepherd resources.