In today’s world staying online and staying connected is a prime need among most of us. This is what prompts us to seek access to WiFi networks wherever we are. At an airport, railway stations nowadays, hotels, while waiting in a hospital or wherever. And each time there is WiFi available we tend to connect and get some more time online trying to catch up socially, catch up some work or chores. Public WiFi networks while useful are fraught with dangers as explained by experts in the article below. Listen to these experts about what to avoid while accessing public WiFi networks. Team RetyrSmart
Don’t compromise your security while accessing Public WiFi networks
what are the dangers of all that connectivity? And are you taking the precautions you should?
Let’s start with the basics—connecting at all. It’s a huge security risk to connect to and use an open Wi-Fi network. What’s worse is that the users are not aware when the public Wi-Fi network is already connected and being used.
That’s because most phones connect automatically. But that opens you up to hackers and scammers everywhere you go. Instead, Users should check their device settings and disable automatic connections.
Connecting without caution
So you’ve disabled your automatic connections, but you still need to occasional public Wi-Fi access. Be careful about which networks you choose to connect to. An attacker may set up a Wi-Fi network named Starbucks-guest-wifi-1, for instance, knowing users will assume it’s safe. We should always use caution and verify the trustworthiness before using a public Wi-Fi network.
Playing with money
Don’t perform financial or other sensitive transactions, including banking or filing taxes on public Wi-Fi networks. An attacker may capture your online bank’s credentials or credit card information.”
Sharing your passwords
Wi-Fi users should avoid using any site that requires you to log in with your username or password. You risk exposing those log-in credentials to strangers. You might think you’re safe on sites that encrypt your password, but hackers on public Wi-Fi can ‘listen in’ and capture credentials before they’re encrypted.
Look, we all love a good deal—but maybe wait until you’re home to take advantage of any you find online. When you check out and pay for your purchases, your confidential information, including your contact info, credit card info, and user names and passwords are all sent over the Internet. A hacker could have installed keylogging software in the Wi-Fi network that will capture your private data and then use that data for identity theft or to make purchases using your credit card.
Working from anywhere
One of the beautiful things about all this connectivity is being able to deal with just about any work crisis within seconds, no matter where you are. But not so fast….”Avoid connecting to work services like business email, customer relationship management tools, and accounting software,” Brill explains. “An attacker armed with such credentials can cause millions of dollars of damage to you or your company.”
Checking your own email
We’ve already covered staying away from work email, but you probably have some things you’d like to keep private in your personal email as well. Criminals have the ability to snoop in on your keystrokes when you’re using public Wi-Fi, which means they can gain access to your web-based email accounts if you log in while they’re watching. Most people use their email as a personal filing cabinet with tons of information that can be exploited against you.
Anything without an HTTPS
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people browse without paying attention to the web addresses they’re on. Avoid unencrypted websites. Use only those that use HTTPS. Without that, everything you do can be transmitted in plain text.
Most modern browsers identify HTTPS-protected websites with a lock icon in the address bar. That’s your indication that the site is using encryption to protect your communication.
Setting yourself up for embarrassment
Look, what you do on your personal web-browsing time is your business, unless that is, you do it on a public network. Then you should always assume someone else may be looking over your shoulder. For this reason, you should stay away from browsing anything you might be embarrassed about if discovered. Do not visit private or ‘sensitive’ sites or watch ’embarrassing’ videos. Remember that not only may your activity be intercepted, but the Wi-Fi provider may keep records of the sites you visit
One of the main things people do with their phones while out and about is check their social media networks. But even that maybe a mistake. Even if you’re simply logging in to check your Facebook account, cybercriminals can intercept your username and password, and use that to try and access other accounts.