Microsoft Update Meets Federal Standard

    May 3, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

Windows XP update to add support for Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 opens a new facet to marketing the operating system.

The Redmond-based technology heavyweight placed an update to Windows XP on its download site over the weekend. This particular update has impact beyond enhancing wireless security.

By supporting Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2), XP now meets a federal security standard. Microsoft can market XP with Service Pack 2 as fully supporting Federal Information Processing Standard – Publication 140 (FIPS 140-2).

FIPS 140-2 is a security standard that is used to certify cryptographic modules. One module Microsoft has included uses the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) for encrypting information.

According to a Microsoft Knowledge Base article about the update, Windows XP will display previously hidden Service Set Identifiers (SSIDs) in the Choose A Wireless Network dialog box. This functionality makes it easier for you to connect to public Wi-Fi networks to which you have not previously connected.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.