New campus network offers secure wireless connection


UNL faculty, staff and student laptops can now access the Internet via a secure wireless network while on campus. The new network, UNL-AIR-E, offers an encrypted signal that safeguards against unauthorized third-party access.

"This is a security feature that protects our students and staff," said Jim Hlava, Information Services Network Manager. "It is possible for someone with malicious intent to eavesdrop on open wireless traffic and gain access to personal log-ins and passwords. This new network encrypts the transmission from the computer to the wireless access point. Anyone monitoring the traffic would not be able to decipher the information."

A 30-second setup ensures future use of the computer will use the encrypted campus network. Operating systems that work with UNL-AIR-E include: Windows XP SP2+, Vista, 7; Mac OS 10.4, 10.5, 10.6; and Ubuntu 9.04, 9.10, 10.04.

Other wireless devices will still access UNL-AIR, the unencrypted network. Access to UNL-AIR-E for mobile devices will be offered in the future.

“Migration to the encrypted network is strictly voluntary,” Hlava said. “But it’s an easy, proactive step to limit risk and protect your computer and data."

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