10 Facts About Public Wi-Fi You Need to Know


The majority of the time, Wi-Fi networks aren’t properly set up and can be unsecured. This can make it, so all who connect have the possibility of being invaded or have information leaked. By encrypting connections properly, you can help stay protected. Today we will talk about 10 facts that have to do with privacy invasion and how to fight it on a public Wi-Fi network connection.

public wifi

Public Wi-Fi Secured or Unsecured

1. Open Networks

Connecting to open public networks sometimes can be a dangerous thing to do. When heading to the neighborhood library, or while sitting in your hotel room, you have access to free public Wi-Fi, but you are also connected with who knows how many others. Putting yourself in these types of situations can eventually get you into trouble if someone decided to tunnel their way into your computer’s data. Before connecting to anything public, you should politely ask the owner of the network if the connection is encrypted and secure.

2. Virtual Private Networks

Having a program that is able to scramble all the information going in and out of your computer or phone can be a bigger help than you think. With a good virtual private network, you can encrypt your personal connection to an open public Wi-Fi and make it so nobody can detect you. Having such a feature can be helpful for blocking hackers from getting into your system.

VPNs also allow you to bypass content restrictions imposed by network administrators, or geo-location restrictions that you may encounter when traveling abroad, as not all websites are available worldwide.

3. Secure SSL Encryptions

Did you know there are millions of un-encrypted websites floating about that can potentially be dangerous to your computer’s health when visiting on an unsecured public Wi-Fi network? To make sure sites are secure (when using Google Chrome), take a look for a green lock that is usually placed on the address bar. This can indicate whether the site is safe to place personal information on or not. Never place personal data on unsecured sites for your own safety.

4. Personal Firewall

Taking the time to set up the firewall on your computer can be a very annoying task but can really be valuable for your online travels. What it provides is great low-level protection (when using the standard OS firewall) and can help warn you about malicious intrusions. Having a third party firewall can be more beneficial when it comes to protection but can also be a little harder to set up.

5. Sharing Files

Make sure always to turn off Network Discovery and File Sharing in public. This can prevent any type of accidental file sharing, also leakage of private data. When attempting to shut off these features on a Windows OS, go into your control panel to access the majority of options available to you.

6. Email Complexity

Taking a few minutes of your time to change email passwords and creating something a little complex can help you in the long run. When connecting to public Wi-Fi, someone can have access to your data, which means emails, accounts, pictures, etc. Changing your passwords after being connected to an unsecured network can be a wise thing to do.

7. Money Transfers

Never use any websites like PayPal, banks, and online game wallets when left open. As stated earlier, being on the same network with dozens of others can be risky, so staying away from vital information would be a smart thing to do till you get home and connect to a secure network.

8. Anti-Virus

With so many available to us today, we can easily choose one just to add the extra layer of comfort we need when using a public Wi-Fi connection. This can let you know ahead of time if someone might be attempting to connect to you, or if you somehow contracted any type of malicious bugs from unsecured websites. This can be the added security you need and a very strong one at that.

9. Turn off Wi-Fi

When sitting on a public network, make sure to turn off the Wi-Fi feature when not in use. This is just a bonus for your own computer to not contract anything without you noticing. While you are at it, turn off the Bluetooth feature as well, this is just another file-sharing connection you don’t need publicly.

10. Mobile Phones

Did you know mobile phones have no way of letting you know what sites could be secured or not? This is not a very safe choice to use on an open network, and please stay away from any money transfer applications or applications that may have detailed information about the user. Another option could be using a mobile virtual private network for use; this can be secured to an extent. The issue with mobile phones is they do not have a number of security options as a personal computer.

Take all these facts into consideration and protect yourself the next time you go have a coffee at the local café or have to make a quick stop to pick up a book at the library. I hope we can all keep progressing and stop such invasions in the future permanently.


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