10.6. Why Does All This Matter?
Wireless is currently in a honeymoon period. People are throwing access points on the air with abandon, showing little regard for careful design. An emerging tenet of wireless administration, however, is that you should not illuminate areas you don't intend to service. Splashed-over signal into the parking lot creates an inadvertent hot zone that attackers can take advantage of. Also, it is an emerging tenet that you should not accept logins from signals that are lower than a certain power level (as would occur if you log in from the park bench across the street) or that cannot operate at a link speed below a certain threshold (as would occur if you were an outsider trying to log in from a distance, say the parking lot). Carefully choosing the type of antennas to use and planning their physical layout so as to not splash out of bounds, will keep the radio energy where it is needed, minimizing interference from competing sources. This forms a first line of defense against external attackers seeking to eavesdrop or join in a network where they are uninvited. More about this in a moment.