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Hi I have an iphone which I tether my laptop to via a personal hotspot.

This all works fine anywhere but at the office. IN all other places I do not need to re-enter the hotspot password and the network is automatically joined when selected.

However, when operating at work I find that I am consistently being asked for the Wifi password during the same hotpost tethering process.

Can somebody explain how this could be happening, and what I can do to get around it?

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Specific reasons for "why" this could be happening are numerous. Do you work in a tightly regulated facility? Could your employer have something to interfere with radio frequency emissions in the vicinity (intentional interference or not)?

The first thing to try is changing the wifi channel your hotspot uses, if the iPhone allows this.

Top things I would guess as the cause:

  1. Your hotspot configuration overlaps or conflicts with another radio signal in the area.
  2. An active countermeasure system is in place, overtly trying to disrupt the wireless signals it detects between your phone and laptop (not unheard of, but not very common in my humble experience).
  3. A malicious actor is trying to man-in-the-middle (aka Evil Twin) attack your connection (more common, but not exactly something you encounter every day).
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    This list is by no means comprehensive. I would bet on number 1; I mention numbers 2 and 3 because they are possible, if not likely. – 0xSheepdog Mar 30 '17 at 21:18
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That doesn't sound all that different from a wifi deauth attack. Some greedy or paranoid IT people have been known to do this either as a way of claiming all the spectrum for themselves or to prevent people from plugging in open-access routers into a wired LAN port.

  • It's not being greedy, people should be more careful to move their APs to a free portion of the spectrum, or use 5.8GHz at superlow wattage with a micro-AP. OP can just ask his IT staff anyway, what is there to hide? Most likely it's a matter of using sites that the company blocks, anyway. – user400344 Apr 2 '17 at 8:52

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