Wifi Security Concerns: How To Be Safe When Using A Public WiFi

Wifi Security Concerns

We are living in an age where we can access data from various locations by using mobile or other handheld devices.

Smartphones and laptops can access various Wi-Fi networks at home, office, airports, hotels and other public places. The ability to access information through public wifi hot spots will save your money and time as well.

At the same time access of information from public or private places through wireless networks also pose the risk of unauthorized entry of others into your network and your data will be at risk.

Let us find ways and means to access data safely through Wi-Fi connections.

Wi-Fi hot spots are hackers’ hot spots too

There is a possibility of avhacker luring you to connect into a network by posing as a Wi-Fi spot. You should not fall into such kind of trap. The information that you send through wireless mode might be sniffed by using various software tools.

By taking the necessary precautions, you can easily manage safe data transfer through wireless hot spots.

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It is not prudent to connect to one of the hundreds of thousands of active Wi-Fi networks available in the world by setting the connection parameter of your laptop or smartphone to automatic mode.

You should check technology adopted by the network security system. Wi-Fi Protected Access Version 2 (WPA 2) is the latest network security system which will also connect at a fast pace. WPA 2 will not work on old networking cards.

WPA 2 requires the testing and certification by Wi-Fi Alliance, industry association which implements the elements of wireless standards. WPA 2 has eliminated all the serious drawbacks associated with earlier WPA.

Use secured website mode

You should not share your private and sensitive information on websites that are not using encrypted technology. You can find whether a website is secured or not by noticing https at the beginning instead of http.

It is common that https sites will employ a minimum of 256 bit encrypted technology for data transfer through their sites. As the data is encrypted, it is not possible to encode the data even if someone is able to access the data you send across the wireless network.

Banking and shopping sites adopt secured technologies on their sites. You can also observe the same on Gmail, Hotmail, Facebook and other websites.

Wi-Fi with VPN secures your data

For frequent travelers it is advisable to install Virtual Private Network (VPN) in the device. The advantage with VPN is that the data will be tunneled through a separate channel which will adopt an encrypted technology.

All the data that goes and comes through the device will be kept safe through VPN filtration.

It is ideal for businesses to go for a monthly or annual plans offered by various VPN service providers. A suitable plan can be subscribed depending on the volume of data you access through the device like iPad, iPhone, smartphone, laptop, etc.

Some companies are offering customized service as per various business needs.

Private Tunnel is one such feature which is based on open source, OpenVPN technologies.

You can also activate firewall on your computer. Firewall will restrict unauthorized access to data and resources present in the computer.

Going for cellular connection by avoiding Wi-Fi connection altogether is another option. You can go for an unlimited data plan that can be accessed through your smartphone.

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About the author

Jane Sheeba

is an entrepreneur and online business consultant. She shares her wellness tips at Slick Wellness. If you are into starting/running an online business and want success with life and business go here.

katherin - February 13, 2012

Great post..
Tips are excellent..This post gives a clear view about WIFI..
Activating firewall is a best solution to protect a computer..Thanks for sharing a more information about WIFI…it helps to know more about it..

Paul Salmon - February 13, 2012

Ensuring that when you are connected to a wireless network that it is secured is very important. There has been much in the news lately about hackers being able to access your personal data through an unsecured wireless network, sot you must ensure you take the proper precautions when using a wireless network.

The VPN option is probably one that is under-used as many people don’t even know about VPN. Most companies that allow their employees to work out of the office will provide a VPN option for connecting to the internal company network.

Fernando - February 14, 2012

I’m very concerned about security. I’m glad I’ve read your article. Thanks for sharing.

Nimsrules - February 15, 2012

Great post but I think WEP encryption is enough for Home networks. You can opt for WPA2 for public hotspots.

Jakes - February 15, 2012

Hi Jane,
Nice post. War-driving can be done in your areas, which will find out the vulnerable WiFi spots available. But, the thing is that mostly in public Wifi hot-spots once cannot use WEP or WPA as it is to remain open for all. And, this is where hackers come in. All you could do use is a nice Intrusion Detection System and a good Logger so as to use the log data to track down the cracker .

Mike Reeson - February 16, 2012

I am very nervous about my protection. Never let your iPhone automatically search for wifi, this should always be done manually. And it gives a little extra battery boost.

    Guest Author - February 18, 2012

    That’s right Mike. Its important to turn off the automatic search function.

techtikus - February 16, 2012

I usually do not use public Wi-Fi for the fear of my passwords getting sniffed. In my opinion if you want to use public Wi-Fi better only use it if you want to search for general information which does not require you to log in.

    Guest Author - February 18, 2012

    That’s for sure. Logging in to any websites using a public Wi-Fi is a sure no-no. BTW, may I know your name please?

Becca - February 16, 2012

We have wifi and this is I am using for connecting to internet. It is protected and no one can access on it. thanks for these tips.

Mhelgie Garcia-Victorio - February 17, 2012

Thanks for sharing this post Jane. Nowadays that there are a lot of people who have bad intentions you should really have some security especially on your data. Even though you are on a Wi-Fi zone you still need to make sure that your data are safe.

    Guest Author - February 18, 2012

    Mhelgie, internet is itself a scary place. And Wi-Fi is for sure scarier considering people with bad intentions. Thanks for stopping by!

Amit Shaw - February 18, 2012

I am using my wifi and my nighbors also, not there own its my access 😉 Hope now i can revoke by this tips. Thanks for this useful tips.

Nickty - February 20, 2012

I was loosing my usage once upon a past time. that time i was limited connection. This time i have unlimited connection and being concerned by reading this informative post.


Dave Ventura - March 13, 2012

Internet technology is not a safe place at all, even if you that you have that enough security features there are still existing computer savvy (hacker) that could steal and destroy your file without your permission, and I think much more precautions should be implemented while staying in Wi-Fi zone. Even if it offers free access to the internet it also lacks from stringent security features.
But then, there’s still hope as this post discuss some possible cure on how to prevent being dubious people grasp your data. Thanks for sharing these lovely tips!

Lesleyanneyp - April 11, 2012

Thanks for the information. configure your firewall and network password for security purpose. these will ensure the safety of your gadgets.

Imtiaz Rayhan - November 21, 2012

Hey Jane,
Agree with your all points. I think we should enable firewall and turn off the file sharing option when we use public Wi-Fi connection.
Thanks for the post.

Atul Bansal - June 13, 2013

The best and easiest way to protect pc against fraudelent activities if activating firewall protection. Its easy for noobs also

BTW, you uprooted all the info on WiFi and its great post


Kristine - June 21, 2013

With the way our lifestyle is evolving, we should all be careful with our information in the world wide web. It is very scary how anyone can do with just hacking into your wifi.

Dan - June 22, 2013

I have always feared that the public WIFI connections are not safe. I mean, I had a fried that was good with computers and he told me how easy is to access data via wifi networks. Therefore, it is important to know how to protect yourself against unwanted access when connecting to a public internet network. Thanks for sharing this with us.

Simona - July 15, 2013

Very strange things started happening on my Android phone and I fear that I am the victim of reckless wifi usage. I mean, I`ve started to notice that certain files and contact have been disappearing. Also, sometimes when I use my phone it just goes wild and it looks like somebody else is using it. Could it be what you are describing? I should follow your tips next time. Thanks!

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