How to set up WiFi SMS Authentication
- Wi-Fi SMS Authentication
- Set up a Wi-Fi guest portal protected with SMS authentication. The Protectimus solution integrates with the Ubiquiti UniFi Controller and allows you to secure access to your Wi-Fi network with SMS authentication. You can use any SMS provider of your choice.
After you set up the Wi-Fi guest portal using the Ubiquiti UniFi Controller and connect Protectimus, the WiFi SMS authentication process will look like this:
- When trying to connect to a Wi-Fi network, the user enters their phone number;
- The user receives an SMS message with a one-time password and enters it in the appropriate field;
- Protectimus verifies the one-time password and allows or denies the user access to the Wi-Fi network.
The Protectimus server logs all inputs in CSV format. The user’s MAC address, access point MAC address, issued IP, and entered phone number are recorded and stored. It is possible to configure the data storage period depending on the customer’s requirement. Most countries require to keep these data for a minimum of 6 months.
The Protectimus Authentication Server can be installed on-premises on your hardware. It is also possible to use the Protectimus Cloud Service.
You may use any SMS providerYou can choose any SMS provider for WiFi SMS authentication. The Protectimus system integrates with any SMS delivery service via the SMPP protocol. So our customers have the opportunity to connect an SMS provider with the most favorable conditions.
Convenience and compliance with the lawWiFi SMS authentication is a familiar and convenient form of Wi-Fi authentication for end users. In addition, Wi-Fi authentication via SMS allows you to comply with the requirements of the legislation on the identification of Wi-Fi users by phone number.
- Ubiquiti UniFi Controller support;
- Logging and storage of user data;
- Free trial period and 25$ to your Protectimus account;
- Assistance with setup and integration;
- Integration via SMPP with any SMS provider of your choice;
- The Protectimus WiFi SMS Authentication solution for accessing Wi-Fi via SMS is available as a cloud service
or can be installed in the customer’s infrastructure as an on-premise platform;
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SMS authentication is used to protect Wi-Fi networks for several reasons. First, SMS authorization for Wi-Fi networks lowers the risk of using guest Wi-Fi hotspots to steal user data, for man-in-the-middle attacks and other hacker attacks. Secondly, Wi-Fi authentication via SMS for public Wi-Fi networks is a mandatory requirement in most states to combat terrorism. Terrorists often use the unsecured public Wi-Fi networks to exchange data. Wi-Fi SMS authentication deprives connected users of anonymity, which helps law enforcement officers to identify criminals. Thirdly, companies often use the interface the user sees when entering a phone number and one-time password to display advertisements for their services, which is beneficial for their businesses.
Wi-Fi authentication by SMS is the best tool to combat the use of public Wi-Fi hotspots for hacker and terrorist attacks. Attackers, hackers and terrorists often use unsecured public Wi-Fi networks for their own purposes – from collecting user data to terrorist attacks. But when you protect access to Wi-Fi by SMS authentication, it is more difficult to connect to such a Wi-Fi network. Moreover, data about the user who logged in via SMS is stored on the authentication server for six months or more. Every user who connects to the guest Wi-Fi hotspot protected by SMS, loses their anonymity. In the event of a crime, it will be easier to find such a user. But it is more likely that the attacker will avoid using the Wi-Fi network protected with SMS authorization not to enter their data.
After integrating the Protectimus solution for Wi-Fi authentication via SMS with the Ubiquiti UniFi Controller, the user authentication process when connecting to a Wi-Fi network will look like this. When the user wants to connect to Wi-Fi, they see a message asking them to enter their phone number for SMS authentication; it is possible to display the client’s advertising in the same window. When a phone number is entered, the Ubiquiti UniFi Controller passes it to the Protectimus authentication server. Protectimus processes the request, generates a one-time password (OTP), and contacts the SMS provider to send the OTP to the user. The user enters the received one-time password in the required field. The Ubiquiti UniFi controller sends the OTP password to the Protectimus authentication server. Protectimus verifies the OTP password and allows access to the Wi-Fi network. Wi-Fi authentication via SMS worked.
The main requirement when implementing Wi-Fi authentication via SMS is to store data about users who access the guest Wi-Fi network. As a rule, the owner of the public Wi-Fi network should collect and store data about Wi-Fi network users for six months or more. For this, we provided a mechanism for logging user data. The Protectimus system for Wi-Fi authentication by SMS logs data about all inputs in CSV format. The following data about the Wi-Fi network users are stored in the logs: the user’s MAC address, the MAC address of the access point, the issued IP, the entered phone number. You can set the period for storing this information depending on the client’s needs and legal requirements.