Explained: What is WPA3 and why should you care?

2 min read

It’s the modern-day question that almost everyone has asked at some point: what’s the Wi-Fi password? Security is one of the biggest concerns in this day, and it’s no exception when it comes to our internet security. We care deeply about our privacy and personal information. After all, we’ve heard the horror stories of identity theft, credit card theft, and hackers cracking our carefully crafted, pet-inspired Wi-Fi passwords.

The WPA2 Wi-Fi security standard has been in use since 2004 and it’s worked well. But with an increasing number of devices connected to the internet and much of our lives dependant on the internet, we can’t rely on an old standard to keep us protected. With WPA3, all you need to know is that internet security has gotten even better. Just like with WPA2, hackers will try to connect to your home Wi-Fi router in order to gain access to all the devices connected to it (computers, smartphones, tablets, smart home devices). They do this by downloading the Wi-Fi routers’ information for offline use. Once that’s done, they can guess the password as many times as they want until they get it right. Except now with WPA3, it’s much harder for hackers to guess the password because once the information is offline they only have one guess at the password. After that, the information is useless — thus protecting your information.

Another great feature of WPA3 is the lack of data accessible, assuming a hacker can crack the password. In the past hackers were able to gather older information that has streamed across your network. Now hackers will only have access to whatever information was streaming at the time of the hack, and all the while they have to be physically present, being that downloading the router information for offline use is pretty much useless.

Of course, WPA3 isn’t going to roll out immediately, and for now WPA2 is still the Wi-Fi standard for certification. Should you be concerned about upgrading? Not right away. WPA3 still has some time before most manufacturers start building it into their devices, but soon enough WPA3 will be the standard. When that time comes it would be smart for you to upgrade by buying a Wi-Fi router that supports WPA3 first. Then all the latest and greatest devices that you’ll eventually upgrade to will support WPA3, but again it won’t be for a little while.

Source: The Verge