The Wi-Fi Alliance announced the first round of products that are Wi-Fi CERTIFIED(tm) for the WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access 2(tm)) capability. WPA2 builds on its predecessor, WPA(tm), and is specifically designed to meet the most demanding enterprise security needs. The first WPA2 products are expected to be available from vendors later this month.
WPA2 is based upon the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers' (IEEE) 802.11i amendment to the 802.11 standard, which was ratified on July 29, 2004. The primary difference between WPA and WPA2 is that WPA2 uses a more advanced encryption technique called AES (Advanced Encryption Standard), allowing for compliance with FIPS140-2 government security requirements.
Products that are Wi-Fi CERTIFIED for WPA remain technically sound and secure. However, many enterprise organizations have been seeking an interoperable, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED technology based on the full IEEE 802.11i standard. Others require AES encryption for internal or regulatory reasons. WPA2 meets these needs. Furthermore, because WPA2 is backwards- compatible with WPA, organizations that have already implemented the WPA standard can migrate to WPA2 at their own pace.
"Enterprise security needs are not a stationary target, and the Wi-Fi Alliance is committed to certification programs that meet evolving security requirements," said Wi-Fi Alliance Managing Director, Frank Hanzlik. "WPA2 is ideally suited for enterprises in both the public and private sectors. Products that are CERTIFIED for WPA2 give IT managers the assurance that the technology meets interoperability standards and in turn, helps them manage support and deployment costs," Hanzlik added.
Products obtaining WPA2 certification on September 1, 2004 include:
Atheros AR5002AP-2X Concurrent 802.11a and 802.11b/g Dual-band Access Point
Atheros AR5002X Universal 802.11a/b/g Wireless Network Adapter
Broadcom AirForce(tm) 802.11a/g CardBus Reference Design, BCM94309CB
Broadcom AirForce 802.11a/g Access Point Reference Design, BCM94704-AGR
Cisco Aironet 1200 Series Access Point with integrated 802.11a and 802.11g radios
Gateway 7001 Access Point
Intel(R) Pro/Wireless 2915 Network Connection
Realtek RTL8185&8255 802.11a/g 54M WLAN NIC / RTL8185&8255-NIC