Thinking Out Loud

Do You Use Public Wifi? Think About This…

By Theagarajan_CML

Most of us use public Wifi at some point during the week, yes? Hotspots in coffee shops, hotels, universities and other public spots are oober convenient and appreciated but often, not secure.

If you frequently use public Wifi connections and send your personal information (whether through websites on your laptop or mobile device) including apps, there’s a chance it could be accessed by some snoopy shady people.

When you only have access to public Wifi, try only sending your information to sites that are fully encrypted. Think of your personal information in the form of an egg. If a website is fully encrypted, it will take your egg and scramble the hell out of it so creepers can’t gather your information. Throwing a puzzle on the ground with all the pieces scrambled is another good analogy.

So what if you are using a mobile app to do your banking while sipping on coffee in the airport? It’s recommended that when you’re conducting sensitive transactions and entering personal information over a mobile app, it’s best to use a secure website or your cell carriers data network, like 3G or 4G.

How do you know if your website is secure? Check to make sure the website you’re visiting is https. The “s” is for secure. Choose to use a company’s mobile website version versus desktop version so you can check that it is https.

Most public Wifi networks are NOT secure. So what can you do try and keep your information safe?

  • Always log out of websites and accounts. Don’t just close the page. Always log out.

  • Don’t use the same password for different accounts and websites. If you’ve used an unsecure site and someone has gained access, you may have given them access to more than just one account.

  • Be sure that each site you visit during your “surfing” is encrypted. If not, log out right away.

  • WPA2 is the strongest encrypted network that you can be on. I will typically use a VPN from a provider. VPN is virtual private network that you can get through various VPN providers. VPN’s encrypt the websites you visit from your computer and the internet.

Stay safe my friends, stay encrypted.

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