2 Tips to Surf Securely on Public Wi – Fi

Wi – Fi or wireless fidelity technology allows electronic devices to access and transfer data over computer networks using radio waves. Wi – Fi is synonymous with WLAN or wireless local area networks, and is used mainly for accessing internet. Electronic devices that use Wi – Fi for internet connectivity require wireless network access points or hotspots, and wireless routers are used to direct the traffic online. Different devices like PCs, digital audio players, tablet PCs, laptops, and smartphone are available with built-in Wi – Fi card. Devices have to first connect to the Wi – Fi access point or hotspot before they can access internet.

Access points come with security and privacy features, and are set up for members of offices, campuses, and departments of organisations. They can be customised as the users are already known. Hotspots are for public access in internet cafes, airports, coffee shops, bowling alleys, and bars. Hotspot environments are characterised by on-demand access without registration or membership. These public Wi – Fi hotspots lack privacy although different encryption, authentication, and authorisation technologies try to offer security. Those who prefer to surf the web using pubic Wi – Fi facilities have to take precautions for security reasons. Much care need to be paid when you are using public Wi-Fi since they will be having threat of virus infections and they also have potential dangers of theft of personal information.

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Tips for secure public Wi – Fi access:

  • The best option for surfers is to access public Wi – Fi hotspots with security features and password access. This may be inconvenient, but it is better than “unsecured” public access . Prefer WPA2 encryption over WPA. As a last resort you can settle for WEP if nothing else is available.
  • Configure your operating system’s network location to “Public Network” which strengthens data hiding and prevents malicious access.
  • Make use of security solutions like VPN or virtual private network. Both third-party VPNs or cloud-based VPNs place a security layer between your device and the internet. This may slowdown access slightly, but it is always better to be safe than sorry.
  • Foresight on the part of public Wi – Fi users is necessary. Always rely on internet and web security suites with firewalls, top-of-the shelf antivirus, anti-malware, and anti-spyware software. With increase in number of viruses and hackers, this is essential.
  • You can use the operating system applications to hide important files and folders.
  • It is better to avoid financial, banking, and commercial transactions while using public Wi – Fi.

Public access Wi – Fi can be exploited by intelligent hackers to cause damage to your hard disk storage. The following precautions can help protect resources and prevent serious damage:

  • Always encrypt your hard drive and protect it with password to avoid serious damage.
  • Back up data regularly, clean your browser cache and history, avoid saving passwords and form-filling data.
  • Schedule updates for system and security software.

So now with these tips, you can secure your valuable datas and lo-in credentials from hackers without the fear of surfing on public Wi-Fi.

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