Out with the old: Wi-Fi Alliance reveals WPA3 for 2018 release

James Marshall
January 13, 2018

Additionally, the standard will strengthen user privacy in open networks through individualized data encryption, which would prevent people from spying on network traffic on open networks.

Chances are that you connect to Wi-Fi every day, but you might not realize that "Wi-Fi" is in fact a trademark of the Wi-Fi Alliance, a non-profit that promotes the use of wireless technology and sets voluntary safety standards for all wireless devices.

The protocol, known as WPA3, will deliver a suite of features to simplify Wi-Fi security configuration for users and service providers, according the Wi-Fi alliance. They will include features like improved protection when users choose weak passwords and improved security setup on devices with limited or no interface screens. The largest differences between WPA2 and WPA3 are in open network security.

The Wi-Fi Alliance - an industry group that counts Apple, Cisco, Intel, Microsoft, and Qualcomm among its many members - said it intends to keep hammering away at WPA2, even as it rolls out the protocol's successor.

A spokesperson for the Wi-Fi Alliance told The Register in an email that further information will be made available once the WPA3 program launches.

The industry will begin rolling out the WPA3 Wi-Fi protocol in products in 2018 and replace WPA2, meaning vendors will have to follow the security standard in order to carry the "Wi-Fi Certified" branding. And the other is a stronger 192-bit security suite, which the Wi-Fi Alliance says is aligned with the Commercial National Security Algorithm Suite from the Committee on National Security Systems. IT decision-makers should consider the imminent introduction of WPA3 as an important development in an evolving security landscape.

Many organizations have security solutions and protocols in place to detect these kinds of threats, but WPA3 will hopefully solve these problems so organizations can focus on more advanced and informative security strategies.

The US Department of Commerce and the Department of Homeland Security also recently recognized the need to evolve network security for defending against attacks against connected medical and IoT devices.

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