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An Isolated Distance Education Lab Environment For The Study Of Wireless Devices

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Computer-Assisted Lab Studies

Tagged Division

Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.231.1 - 12.231.8



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Paper Authors


Lee Toderick East Carolina University

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Lee Toderick received a B.S. in Computer Science from East Carolina
University and an MS in Computer Information Systems from Boston University.
His professional certifications include CCNP/CCDP and RHCE. His currently
serves as teaching instructor in the Department of Technology Systems at
East Carolina University. Research interests include remote lab access for
distance learning students, firewall implementation, and applied computer
network security.

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Jingyuan Deng East Carolina University

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Jingyuan Deng received a B.S. in Communication Engineering from Tianjin
University, China. She is currently working on a Master Degree in
Technology Systems of East Carolina University, concentrating in the fields
of Digital Communication and Networking. She is employed by the College of
Technology and Computer Science as the graduate assistant. She is the
President of the Epsilon Pi Tau - Beta Mu Chapter.

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Philip Lunsford East Carolina University

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Phil Lunsford received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and a M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University. He is a registered professional engineer and is currently an Assistant Professor at East Carolina University. His research interests include system simulation, telemedicine applications, and information assurance.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

An Isolated Distance Education Lab Environment for the Study of Wireless Devices and Protocols


Many educational institutions that offer curriculum classes in wireless technologies include protocol investigation and security configuration. Wireless technology labs help to reinforce theory and concepts, and to provide educational experiences not available through classroom lecture. Secure, remote access to lab equipment enables students to perform experiments 24/7 from any location thus maximizing the utilization of the equipment and providing scheduling flexibility to the students. Student laboratories for wireless devices can be problematic in institutions that offer wireless network access. This production wireless environment can be disrupted or even disabled if a student misconfigures the laboratory equipment.

This paper describes our success with the adoption of an isolated, remotely-accessible faraday cage that houses wireless equipment, permitting even the most invasive wireless projects to be performed in an area that offers production wireless network access. Our lab isolation is optimized for the ISM 2400-2483 MHz frequency band thus providing isolation for IEEE 802.11b/g radio communication. Current laboratory exercises include wireless access point configuration, wireless network interface card configuration, wireless network sniffing, WEP cracking, rogue access point detection, and wireless-based DoS attacks.

Remote control of devices inside a faraday cage is inherently problematic. Any wiring penetrating the wall of the cage is a potential source for RF leakage. Our approach is to use fiber optic cable for all data transmission into and out of the isolation area. Power delivery into the isolation area requires care to provide grounding filters for the frequency range of concern. Heat dissipation from the isolation area is aided by forced airflow through the cage. Details of our implementation are given.


The goal of this project is to provide the student with a fundamental understanding of wireless network security principles and implementation scenarios. To that end, a variety of security topologies, technologies and concepts used to provide secure communications channels are presented. An abbreviated list of subjects1,2 include:

• Explain the goals and factors involved in a wireless network security strategy. • Explain several popular wireless network attacks and configure wireless security to mitigate vulnerabilities. • Explain popular wireless protocols, and apply the protocols in a wireless networked environment. • Explain and demonstrate the concepts of wireless data transfer security issues and techniques used to secure wireless data, such as WAP, WTLS, and WEP. • Explain, model, and configure wireless network security perimeters.

Toderick, L., & Deng, J., & Lunsford, P. (2007, June), An Isolated Distance Education Lab Environment For The Study Of Wireless Devices Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--1695

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