How to Change the WEP Key on a Cisco Wireless Access Point

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To change the WEP key on a Cisco Aironet Access Point, you must have the IP address to the Access Point administration tool. You must also have administrative rights over an unencrypted WLAN to open the Access Point administrative tool. Schedule a time during a period of low network traffic when users are not attempting to connect to the network to change the WEP key. When you change the WEP key, all users will be disconnected. Users will need to enter the new WEP key to reconnect to the access point.

1 Open a Web browser

Open a Web browser on a computer connected to your network and type the IP address for the Access Point in the address bar. Press “Enter.” The Enter Network Password dialog box opens.

2 Press the Enter key

Type “Cisco” as both the username and password, then press the “Enter” key. The Access Point administration tool opens to the Summary Status page.

3 Click the Setup ” option

Click the “Setup” option, then click “AP Radio/Hardware.”

4 Click the Radio Data Encryption

Click the “Radio Data Encryption (WEP)” option, then click “AP Radio Data Encryption.” The WEP options are listed.

5 Check the Use

Check the “Use of Data Encryption by Station Is:” drop-down box and make sure that “No Encryption” is selected.

6 Check the Open check box in the Accept Authentication Types field

Check the “Open” check box in the Accept Authentication Types field. You can also click the “Shared Key” option, too, but this option creates security vulnerabilities in your network. Cisco recommends selecting only the “Open” authentication type for this field.

7 Click the Transmit With Key radio button

Click the “Transmit With Key” radio button next to the WEP Key you will use for security.

8 Type

Type a new password for your network in the Encryption Key field next to the WEP key you selected.

9 Click the Key Size

Click the “Key Size” drop-down box, then click either “40-bit” or “128-bit” encryption. Cisco Access Points only support 128-bit encryption over connections with other Cisco products.

10 Click the Apply button

Click the “Apply” button to save the settings. Close the browser.

  • Note that WEP encryption is known to be a weak encryption method. Change your WEP key on a regular basis to minimize security vulnerabilities.
  • Information provided in this article applies to the Cisco Aironet 1130AG Series Access Point. Instructions may vary slightly or significantly for other models of access points.
  • You can also access the AP Radio Data Encryption menu from the Summary Status screen by clicking “Setup | Security | Security Setup: Radio Data Encryption | AP Radio Data Encryption.”

Randall Blackburn has worked for several Fortune 1000 companies as a technical writer over the past seven years. He has produced a wide variety of technical documentation, including detailed programming specifications and research papers. Randall has also acquired several years' experience writing web content. Randall lives and works in Austin, TX.