The Cost of Public Wi-Fi

Category: Staffing, Tips & Advice,

Public Wi-Fi Networks put your data at risk.

Free Wi-Fi can be Costly

Ok, admit it – you’ve logged on to the public Wi-Fi network at a coffee shop, school, airport lounge or hotel.  It probably made you feel even safer when you had to enter a password.  You know the ones that are prominently displayed in the waiting area, at the counter or handed to you like a business card!  Well, even with a password you are sharing a network with lots of other people, which means your data is at risk.

A password and the fact that most wireless routers have a firewall to protect you doesn’t mean your data is safe.  According to Anurag Sharma, a principal of WithumSmith+Brown’s cybersecurity consulting practice.  “Hackers can act as the middle man between you and the connection point, seeing all traffic and files you are using.”

These days most everyone has become dependent on their smartphones, laptops and tablets.  Wi-Fi allows you to stay connected.  Wi-Fi provides a strong signal for a faster connection.  This allows you to work while on the go, bank online, make travel arrangements and surf the Internet.  Basically, Wi-Fi creates a mobile desktop environment.

You can still do these things and keep your data safe.  Don’t take unnecessary risks with your data.  If you are using a public Wi-Fi connection, play it safe and follow a few guidelines to greatly reduce your risk.

  • Turn off network file sharing.  You can do this by choosing the connection type as public.
  • Use a VPN connection when possible.
  • Check your email application to make sure that it is using SSL.
  • Do sensitive browsing, like banking and credit card information, at home.

This list isn’t all-encompassing but it is a good start to help keep your data and the company data safer.  Don’t let public Wi-Fi connections cost you everything.