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Here is the situation:

I have a router that has been hijacked/hacked recently and we're attempting to up the security. Whilst I know MAC address filtering can easily bypassed, I'd like to clarify one point.

We have a laptop. Its WIRELESS MAC address is registered on the router, the Ethernet MAC address is not. If the user of the laptop is having Internet connection problems, someone else has suggested that even the physical Ethernet connection will help to bolster the wireless connection, despite the Ethernet MAC address not being registered.

I believe this is wrong but I'd like someone with more expertise on the matter to give me a hand.

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migrated from security.stackexchange.com Jun 7 '13 at 18:03

This question came from our site for information security professionals.

1  
Putting the ethernet MAC Address in the Wirelist Whitelist won't increase the security of your network. What will increase the security of your network is using the proper encryption and a strong password ( 15-20 characters) to join the network. – Ramhound Jun 7 '13 at 12:49

The answer is: it depends.

If you're talking about a consumer-grade router, then in all likelihood, it only performs MAC filtering on the wireless interface. In that case, you can connect any device to a wired interface with no problem.

It's worth noting that a wired interface replaces a wireless one, there's no bolstering involved. Absent very unusual configuration, a device only uses one interface at a time.

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So, in short, if my laptop has a faulty wireless and I plug it into the router, without the Ethernet address being registered, it will still use internet? – Hales Jun 7 '13 at 4:47
    
Yes, that's correct. – David Jun 7 '13 at 6:09
    
WiFi over Ethernet – David Houde Jun 7 '13 at 11:16

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