Securing Wireless Network Using pfSense Captive Portal with Radius Authentication – A Case Study at UMaT

Felix Larbi Aryeh, M Asante, A. E. Y. Danso


Wireless network has become very significant in offices, industries, homes, colleges and universities. It serves as a platform for users to connect to resources on a local network or the internet without intrusive wiring. As a result, it is very crucial to use a good authentication method to avoid unauthorised users to have access. An unsecured wireless network can put users in danger. Anybody can spy their online activities and have access to their files and documents depending on how the network is configured. Currently, one of the most effective ways of achieving a secure wireless network authentication is by using a Captive Portal with Radius authentication method. Captive Portal is a web page that controls any Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP) browser access to the internet. A user on the wireless network trying to access the internet would be redirected to a web page either for both authentication and payment or just for authentication. Authenticated users are identified by the MAC address of their Ethernet card. Radius is a networking service that authenticates and authorises users to networks and network infrastructures. This paper seeks to demonstrate how to use an open source pfSense, a firewall on FreeBSD operating system with Captive Portal and Active Directory-AD for managing user authentication on a University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) wireless network.


Securing, Wireless, Network, pfSense, Captive Portal, Radius Authentication

Full Text:



Appenzeller G., Roussopoulos M., Baker M., (1999), “User-Friendly Access Control for Public Network Ports” IEEE INFOCOM'99. Eighteenth Annual Joint Conference, volume 2, pages699-707.

Austin G., Partha D. (2002), “Secure wireless gateway” WiSE '02: Proceedings of the 1st ACM workshop on Wireless security, pages 41-46.

Cisco (2011), “Cisco”

Danen, V. (2009), “Tech Republic”,

Joanie W. (2010), “Network World”,

Mamat, K, Ruzana Mohamad Saad; “Home Wireless Network Security Using PFSense Captive Portal”, Proceedings of 8th International Conference on IT in Asia 2013 (CITA'13) {IEEE/SCOPUS/ISI}

Miller, S. (2008), “Free Software Magazine”,

Radvan, S. (2010), Wireless and mobile networking overview for Fedora Linux, Red Hat, Vienna, edition 1.2.

Sean W. (2011), “pluralsight”,

Soewito, B. (2014), Building secure wireless access point based on certificate authentication and firewall captive portal, EDP Sciences, Paris.

Stahie, S. (2014), “Softpedia”,


  • There are currently no refbacks.