As regards the IEE 802.11 standard, the security protocol used to encrypt the data transmitted by means of wireless networks. It is composed of 10 or 26 hexadecimal digits (40 or 104 bits).

It was started up in 1997 along with the original 802.11 standard, to attain a level of confidentiality similar to that of the conventional wireless network. During the first few years, it spread extensively and, in many cases, became the first option offered by router configuration tools. However, by 2001, formulas making it possible to breach this had been found. In 2003, the Wifi Alliance announced the substitution of the WEP protocol with the WPA (Wifi Protected Access) protocol.