Activities of IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) include work on the standards for electronic devices and computer formats. Members of this institute have an idea that MAC addresses in WiFi networks should be dynamic and even random. This would improve the security of WiFi networks. Why?
One of the most popular attacks on WiFi networks used by hackers is MAC Spoofing, i.e. copying MAC address of network user. This method is used when the network is secured by MAC address whitelist, i.e. DHCP server provides IP addresses only for known MAC addresses. This protection is very easy to hack. You will need only WiFi card with monitor mode and some handy tool (e.g. WiFi Kismet). When you run Kismet then you will see all Access Points in your area and IP and MAC addresses of hosts connected to these APs. Now you have to only change your MAC address and you have… free Internet access.
Now you see why IEEE proposes dynamic MAC addresses in WiFi networks. Currently MAC address is constant assigned by network adapter manufacturer. Therefore based on MAC you can determine the network adapter producer. Of course you can do this for all hosts from your network 🙂 Unfortunately constant MAC addresses are not safe, specially in case of mobile devices. Therefore the idea about dynamic MAC addresses looks nice. It may be introduced in the next 802.11 standard, so you will able to use it in practice in the near feature. It is not known if this feature will be supported only by new hardware or maybe firmware update will be enough. In my opinion the most important is that this change should be transparent for end users, because they do not like changes 😉