Using long-range Antenna to connect to Public Wi-Fis from a safe distance

Using long-range Antenna to connect to Public Wi-Fis from a safe distance

It is possible to access/connect to remote distant Public Wi-Fis from a distance using a cheap directional Antenna that looks like this.

These antennas are widely available on various online shops for a cheap price (Amazon, AliExpress, Banggood …). The only issue is that they are not discrete, and you might have to find a way to hide it (for instance in a Poster cardboard container in a Backpack). Or in a large enough Bag. Optionally (but riskier) you could even consider using it from your home if you have a nice Window view to various places where some Public Wi-Fi is available.

Such antennas need to be combined with specific USB adapters that have an external Antenna plug and sufficiently high power to use them.

I would recommend the AWUS036 series in the Alfa brand of adapters (see []). But you could also go with some other brands if you want such as the TP-Link TL-WN722 (see []).

See this post for a comparison of various adapters: [] (Usually those antennas are used by Penetration Testers to probe Wi-Fis from a distance and are often discussed within the scope of the Kali Linux distribution).

The process is simple:

  • Plugin and install your USB adapter on your Host OS.

  • Do not forget to randomize your MAC Address in case you bought this adapter online to prevent traceability (this is enabled by default in Tails).

  • Connect the Long-Range Antenna to the USB adapter (in place of the supplied one).

  • Get to a convenient spot where you have a distant view of a place with Public Wi-Fi available (this can be a rooftop for instance), but you could also imagine hiding the Antenna in some bag and just sit on a bench somewhere.

  • Point the Directional Antenna in the direction of the Public Wi-Fi.

  • Connect to the Wi-Fi of your choice.

Do not forget tho that this will only delay a motivated adversary. Your signal can be triangulated easily by a motivated adversary in a matter of minutes once they reach the physical location of the Wi-Fi you’re connecting to (for instance using a device such as AirCheck [Invidious], also see their other products here []). These products can easily be deployed on mobile units (in a Car for instance) and pinpoint your location in a matter of minutes.

Ideally, this should “not be an issue” since this guide provides multiple ways of hiding your origin IP using VPNs and Tor. But if you are in a situation where VPN and Tor are not an option, then this could be your only security.

Source: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Online Anonymity, written by AnonyPla © CC BY-NC 4.0