What is MAC or Media Access Control? - Explained

What is MAC or Media Access Control? - Explained



1. What is MAC Address?

MAC is a commonly heard term in cyber security and networks. MAC stands for Media Access Control Address. MAC or the media access control address is a unique identifier, just like a social security number assigned to network interface controller or NIC which used in communications at the data link layer.

To make it more simpler, MAC address are used to identify the devices which are connected to a network. Each and every component which does have a communication module embedded does have a MAC address which is unique to only the device.


2. Technology

The MAC addresses are generated to a standard by the IEEE 802. MAC address consist of 48-bit address space which is 2^48. Which means the current addressing is capable of providing unique address spaces to 281,474,976,710,656 devices.

3. Security

To enhance the security and enable security features MAC address has helped the cyber security industry and as well as personal cyber security as well.

3.1 MAC Filtering

If there's a WiFi access point at your home, it's possible for you to take security measures to allow only the devices that you specifically granted permission. To grant the permission it's possible to use the MAC address and allow the WiFi network only to the pre-specified devices.