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6 Tips to stay safe on Public Wi-Fi networks

2020/09/17

The internet has become a necessity in today’s era where you can do various things from online shopping, watching movies, surfing in cyberspace and communicating efficiently. Many public places have Wi-Fi installed to connect to the internet. Public Wi-Fi makes it easier to have internet access in public places like the train station, airport, restaurant or hotel.

You do not want to spend any money to buy a data plan during your travel trip. However, Wi-Fi networks in public places often cause problems. Public Wi-Fi connections are vulnerable to hackers’ attacks so that your data and information leaking. You don’t want that to happen. Here we have several ways to keep your privacy safe when using public Wi-Fi.

1. Connect Wi-Fi manually

Make sure you have to choose your Wi-Fi network on your laptop, tablet or phone. Do not connect the Wi-Fi network automatically.

Make sure you “Forget network” every time you finish using the public Wi-Fi to avoid attack when you return to the place because your devices will automatically connect to the said network in the background without you realizing it.

You also need to turn off Wi-Fi sharing or commonly known as tethering when your Wi-Fi network is no longer in use. At least it can help to avoid the third party to access your device in the same network.

2. Avoid accessing sensitive information

Public Wi-Fi shouldn’t be used to access email, online banking transactions, access credit card accounts or other types of sensitive information.

3. Double-check the Wi-Fi network name

Wi-Fi name is also essential when you try to connect your device to public Wi-Fi. The hackers usually use a Wi-Fi name similar to the original Wi-Fi in the place to lurk the victim if you come across Wi-Fi that has the same name, better not to connect to the network.

4. Notice HTTPS

Make sure that the webpage you are visiting must use HTTPS encryption. You can tell that your site includes HTTPS in the address bar of your URL or you can see there is a security lock mark.
A site with HTTPS shows that the website or webpage has multiple valid digital certificates, even to an SSL/TLS encryption point that will minimize Man-in-the-Middle Attack (MITM) from occurring.

5. Use your password encryption.

There are many additional types of security to keep your network safe, like a VPN. You’ll probably find some useful extensions to force your network encryption on websites that aren’t using encryption by default, but the easiest and safest way is using a VPN.
But choosing for a trusted services provider is tricky.

It would be best if you consider some aspects before you use their service.

1. Trustworthiness

One’s won’t be the choice of millions all over the world, if not proven for their integrity.

2. Security

What encryptions they use. I’m sure you’ll prefer to secure your traffic than not. AES 256 encryptions are the best standard for today, bank-level encryption.

3. Speed, stability and bandwidth limitation

Most of us already understand about this requirement. Sluggish speed won’t feel so fun to use.

4. Logging policy

This privacy aspect is crucial. You use a VPN to avoid the Wi-Fi provider to store your activities, but your VPN provider logs you instead. So choose a provider that has a no-log or zero-log policy.

5. Turn on the Firewall.

A Firewall is a network security system that monitors incoming and outgoing network traffic. The Firewall helps prevent unwanted local users from snooping on your computer. For Windows, go to Control Panel > System and Security. Under System and Security find the firewall options and enable the Firewall option.

6. Install Anti-virus

Anti-virus helps to avoids hacker practice. Therefore, if you often use more public Wi-Fi connections, then you need to install an additional antivirus to protect your device from hackers’ abuse practices.