Basic Networking: MAC Address Filtering

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Markleshark, Apr 10, 2008.

  1. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #1
    So I can connect my iBook to my Wireless network I've had to turn any passwords on my Wireless connection off (Long Story) so I've turned MAC address filering on and added everything in my house that uses the Wireless.

    Thats safe right? Noting that isn't on my allowed list can connect? Don't want anyone using my Wireless like.
     
  2. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2006
    #2
    Correct, they would needed to be added to your list before they could use it. Unless they spoofed an approved MAC address! (Not really a concern, but could happen if they had direct access to one of your devices.)
     
  3. Markleshark thread starter macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #3
    Ace. Cheers. Job sorted then. :)

    Also, do I have to add everything that uses Ethernet? So far My Mac is working ok and that uses Ethernet...
     
  4. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2006
    #4
    My impression was that it was really only for wireless. You'd be in trouble if someone you didn't want was connected to your router with an ethernet cable!
     
  5. Markleshark thread starter macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
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    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #5
    LOL, Fair Point well made I suppose.

    Thanks again. :)
     
  6. misterredman macrumors 6502a

    misterredman

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2007
    #6

    Actually MAC address filtering is pretty easy to bypass, also without having access to your machine physically. Just google MAC address spoofing...
     
  7. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

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    Oct 31, 2006
    #7
    How would they get a valid MAC address without being at your machine and looking it up?
     
  8. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #8
    Packet sniffing. They could get a valid MAC within seconds.

    MAC filtering is useless. Plus, traffic isn't encrypted.
     
  9. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

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    Oct 31, 2006
    #9
    That's too bad then. I did not know the MAC address was transmitted.
     
  10. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #10
    Yep. It is. I wouldn't recommend anything less than WPA with a strong password.
     
  11. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #11
    yg17 is right.

    However, you should try to keep in mind what your wireless network is there for, and in which surroundings it is placed.
    Do you live in a rural area where anyone with a wireless capable device is extremely rare, then the possibilities of anyone sniffing your Wifi and then spoofing a MAC address so that he can use your ISP to connect to the internet are remote.
    But, do you live on a college campus.... hmm.... ;)

    So, it's all about balance.

    You should know that MAC address "sniffing" and spoofing is easily possible, but knowing your surroundings is just as important if you want to determine your Wifi safety.

    I'll give you an example of what I do:
    I have my "home network" where I keep my data on a File server, which is on the same network as a Wifi (Airport Express), to which I like to connect to with my MBP and iPhone.
    On this Airport Express I have WPA2 personal security.

    But, I also have an older 802.11b Airport base station (snow) which is directly connected to my ADSL router, which is on a different "network", on which I only have a WEP key as security, so that older wireless devices (older Airport cards, PDAs, or old iPhone Firmware) can connect to that for pure internet connection.
    That is also a way of enabling security: create two networks without a gateway between the two.
     
  12. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    No, its just for Wireless. As others have pointed out you'd be better off with WPA or something, but if that really doesn't work, you should be OK with MAC filtering. It'll at least stop a casual user from accessing your internet.
     
  13. Markleshark thread starter macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #13
    Yeah, I think the surroundings here are important. I live in a residential area, but to be honest I'll be surprised if anyone here can MAC Spoof, I'm generally the guy who fixes everyones computers.

    Thanks for all the information folks, really helpful as always. :D

    MacsRgr8 - Thanks, looking for a base station now. ;) A graphite one would do, right? It's only for an Original Airport Card in a iBook Clamshell... Maybe be better with a Snow one...
     

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