Privacy-preserving 802.11 access-point discovery

Janne Lindqvist, Tuornas Aura, George Danezis, Teemu Koponen, Annu Myllyniemi, Jussi Mäki, Michael Roe

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

26 Scopus citations


It is usual for 802.11 WLAN clients to probe actively for access points in order to hasten AP discovery and to find "hidden" APs. These probes reveal the client's list of preferred networks, thus, present a privacy risk: an eavesdropper can infer attributes of the client based on its associations with networks. We propose an access-point discovery protocol that supports fast discovery and hidden networks while also preserving privacy. Our solution is incrementally deployable, efficient, requires only small modifications to current client and AP implementations, interoperates with current networks, and does not change the user experience. We note that our solution is faster than the standard hidden-network discovery protocol based on measurements on a prototype implementation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2nd ACM Conference on Wireless Network Security, WiSec'09
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event2nd ACM Conference on Wireless Network Security, WiSec'09 - Zurich, Switzerland
Duration: Mar 16 2009Mar 18 2009

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 2nd ACM Conference on Wireless Network Security, WiSec'09


Other2nd ACM Conference on Wireless Network Security, WiSec'09

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Software


  • Access-point discovery
  • IEEE 802.11
  • Privacy
  • WLAN

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