MAC, which stands for “Media Access Control,” is a unique address which represents your network interface device. Put simply, it is a unique number for your network interface hardware assigned by its respective manufacturer. In the networking world, IP addresses and MAC addresses work together to move data back and forth. That said, MAC addresses can be changed or spoofed according to your needs.
All MAC addresses are hard-coded into a network card and can never be changed. However, you can change or spoof the MAC address in the operating system itself using a few simple tricks.
So why would you want to change your MAC address? Well there are many reasons for this, mostly related to bypassing some kind of MAC address filter set on a modem, router or firewall. Changing the MAC Address can help you bypass certain network restrictions by emulating an unrestricted MAC Address or by spoofing a MAC address that is already authorized.
For example, a WiFi network may allow only authorized computers to connect to the network and filters out computers based on the MAC address. If you can sniff out a legitimate MAC address, you can then spoof your MAC address and gain access to the WiFi network.
Another example is if you have an ISP that allows only a certain number of computers to connect to the Internet from your home. If you have more computers that need to connect, you can spoof the MAC address of an authorized computer and connect from a different computer.
Change MAC Address in Ubuntu
1. When it comes to Ubuntu, changing MAC address is even easier than in Windows. To change MAC address in Ubuntu system, select the network icon in the top panel of Ubuntu and select “edit connections” from the list of options.
2. The above action will open the “network connections” dialog box. Select your connection and click on the “edit” button displayed on the right side.
3. This will open another window where you can edit connection settings. Navigate to the “Ethernet” tab and select your network interface under “device MAC address.” Enter your desired MAC address in the empty box next to “cloned MAC address.”
4. Once you have done that, click on the save button to save changes.
To change this setting, we’ll need to edit the /etc/network/interfaces file. You can choose to use a different editor if you’d like.
sudo gedit /etc/network/interfaces
You should see the line for your network interface, which is usually eth0. If you have dhcp enabled, it will look like this:
auto eth0 iface eth0 inet dhcp
Just add another line below it to make it look something like this:
auto eth0 iface eth0 inet dhcp hwaddress ether 01:02:03:04:05:06
Obviously you would want to choose something else for the MAC address, but it needs to be in the same format.
sudo /etc/init.d/networking restart
You will need to restart networking or reboot to take effect.
That’s all there is to do, and you can confirm the changes using the below command in your terminal.
ip link ls
Hopefully that helps and do comment below if you face any problems during MAC spoofing.
Note: The changes we have done to our MAC address in Ubuntu are just temporary. i.e. they will be reset to the original MAC address on every reboot.
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