Understanding MAC Spoofing Attacks

December 2, 2022
Understanding MAC Spoofing Attacks

The unique serial number that each interface’s manufacturer assigns to each interface at the manufacturing is known as the MAC Address, or Media Access Control address. To put it another way, it is the unique, global physical identification number assigned to each and every device connected to a network interface, whether wired or wireless.

On every local network, this address is used to identify network interface interactions. The following format describes the 48-bit, or six-byte, MAC address: “XX:XX:XX:YY:YY:YY: YY.” Let’s discover more about Mac spoofing.

The MAC address is used to identify which equipment is on the local network, whereas an IP address identifies your location on the Internet. The seller essentially burns this MAC address into the hardware, thus the end user cannot change or rewrite this address (BIA). On the software side, it is possible to hide the MAC address, and this is how MAC spoofing works.

A MAC spoofing attack is what?

The prevalence of MAC spoofing attacks has increased as a result of rapidly developing technologies. To avoid being a victim of a MAC spoofing attack, however, we must first grasp what it is.

In a MAC address spoofing attack, a hacker or imposter searches the network for authentic and legitimate MAC addresses and gets around access control systems to get the benefit of pretending to be one of the real MAC addresses.

By presenting this as the default gateway and copying all of the data transmitted to the default gateway covertly, the hacker is able to avoid authentication checks and get crucial information about active programs and end-host IP addresses. This sort of attack is known as MAC address spoofing.

Why is MAC spoofing used and what does it entail?

Masking the MAC address, sometimes referred to as MAC ID spoofing, is one of the most crucial tactics employed in MAC spoofing attacks. The many techniques available to manipulate and manage the basic address system in various computer networks are together referred to as spoofing.

Therefore, the answer to the question “what is MAC address spoofing?” is fairly straightforward: it refers to a technique for altering or concealing a device’s network interface’s factory-assigned MAC address.

The purpose of MAC spoofing

People use MAC spoofing for lawful purposes in addition to hackers employing it to get around access restrictions and security measures or for criminal actions. Every network device is assigned a unique number called a MAC address, which is used to identify that network device throughout the globe. As a result, the following are potential justifications for hiding or forging the MAC address:

Respect for privacy

Since MAC addresses are sent via open or public WLAN or LAN networks, they are not encrypted and reveal the hardware addresses and registration information of the devices that are connected to such networks. Some people hide their addresses to safeguard their privacy and stop this information from being easily accessible. It is also important to keep in mind that hackers use the same excuse to mask their identities and access the web secretly while engaging in illicit actions.

Avoiding identity theft

By limiting access to the LAN to approved devices, many administrators and IT Teams adopt security measures to protect IT systems from internal and external threats. On the OSI layer 2 at the network level, connecting elements like Ethernet switches that use port security make it possible to restrict network data flow. When using the white-listing method, an unknown address is immediately prohibited. Access via WLAN networks is also restricted using MAC filters.

Access to software that costs money

In order to access paid software programs or internet services, MAC address spoofing is also used to imitate an approved device. However, sometimes, some users abuse it by changing or masking their MAC address to the one specified in the licensing agreement of the purchased program in order to utilize the software. This kind of MAC spoofing might always be considered a dishonest use of services by the program or internet service provider, who could then pursue legal action.

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