Want to check whether the password to your wireless network (or your neighbor’s) passes muster? For $34, you can do just that by using a password-cracking service that is primarily aimed at “penetration testers” — people who are paid by a company to test its network’s security.
Robert Lemos writes that the service, known as WPA Cracker, is one of the first hacking services to rely on cloud computing. WPA Cracker went live last Monday — it uses pay-as-you go cloud computing resources to search for an encrypted WiFi Protected Access (WPA) password from 135 million different possibilities, says creator and hacker Moxie Marlinspike. Normally the task would take a single computer about five days, but WPA Cracker uses a cluster of 400 virtual computers and high-performance computing techniques. It takes only twenty minutes, he says.