I am connected to a WPA/WPA2 Access Point and I want to sniff all wireless traffic inside that network. How can I decrypt the traffic even though I don't have the pre-shared key?

  • You mean inside of the network or outside? As you wrote you are already connected to the access point. Therefore, you do not need to decrypt the wireless packets.
    – Pilfility
    Jul 4, 2018 at 6:07
  • The traffic has been encrypted with the key and therefore the only way to decrypt the traffic is to use the key. Am I missing something? Jul 4, 2018 at 6:07

1 Answer 1


Short answer

No, you need the pre-shared key.

Longer answer

WPA-PSK and WPA2-PSK encrypt traffic per client and session keys, which are derived from the pre-shared key.

So if you know the pre-shared key for the network (which you don't) and you sniff the four way handshake when another client joins the access point, you could decrypt only that client's traffic.


This only applies assuming access point isolation is not enabled on the access point.

  • Is there a way to obtain the pre-shared key, e.g. by brute-forcing it?
    – Sjoerd
    Jul 4, 2018 at 12:37
  • how to sniff the four way handshake when another client joins the access point?
    – Mohammad
    Jul 5, 2018 at 10:01
  • @mohammadaghazahiri airodump-ng will do the trick.
    – Jeroen
    Jul 5, 2018 at 13:01

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