Do you feel as though your favorite mobile device has become an appendage of your body, leaving you uncomfortable without it? Are you constantly checking in with your online social network for the latest updates? If so, then you have undoubtedly gone to the corner coffee shop and used their free Internet. You probably went about your business, as usual, checking your emails and maybe even indulging in some online shopping.
After taking into account the average consumer’s contestant Internet usage as well as the fact that people are persistently on-the-go, it is not surprising that Wi-Fi has gone from a luxury to a necessity. Whether you’re at the local coffee shop, a hotel or the airport, you expect to be able to stay connected. However, connecting on-the-go may come at a price.
Darkhotels and Malware:
Malware can potentially give attackers access to everything on your device, including all of your files, photos, and even your built-in camera and microphone.
Darkhotel is just one example. Imagine you are staying in a luxury hotel, where the WiFi signal provided is promised to be very fast. After downloading the hotel’s “welcome package,” submitting your room number and last name at login, you see it is indeed fast. What you don’t see is the spy package that provided a backdoor to sophisticated hackers.
How To Avoid Darkhotels?
When traveling, any network, even semi-private ones in hotels, should be viewed as potentially dangerous, said Kaspersky. To prevent this, the experts warn that travelers should avoid updating software or clicking files when not on trusted networks.
They should also keep their security program up-to-date before they leave their home.
Another common type of attack involving public WiFi is the “man-in-the-middle” attack. Here attackers create their own networks and pose as public WiFi networks, intercepting all of the data flowing between unsuspecting users and the public network. Since all traffic is going through the fraudulent network device, it’s incredibly easy for the hackers to see everything, including data transmitted over encrypted HTTPS connections.
Widely available network equipment makes it easy enough for even a novice to create the spoofed websites and networks needed to perpetrate man-in-the-middle attacks.
Security Tips To Save Yourself From Free wifi Hackers :
1. Verify Your Access Point: Check with personnel at the hotel, airport or other current hot spot before you log into their network; have them confirm that you are actually connecting to their access point. Although the name of the network you are connecting to may be the same as that offered by the legitimate network you are intending to access, a hacker can change his network name to match that of a bona-fide network. So, if you decide to connect to an unfamiliar ad-hoc network, proceed at your own risk because you may be opening up your virtual file cabinet for a hacker’s own viewing pleasure.
2. Use Up-to-Date Security Software: Security software can detect malicious code, like a virus or a worm, and prevents it from harming your computer. Make sure you have the latest version of this software protecting your private information.
3. Keep Your Firewall Turned On: A firewall helps to protect your computer from hackers. While firewall software is prepackaged on some operating systems, it may need to be purchased separately for your computer.
4. Disable Automatic Connections: Before you leave your home or office, make sure your computer is not set to automatically connect to unknown networks. Otherwise, you could be connecting to a hacker’s network and not even know it!
5. Disable File Sharing: When you are not using a trusted network, make sure your computer’s file sharing function is not turned on. Better yet, turn your computer off when you are not using it. When your computer is off, hackers cannot connect to your computer.
6. Download With Caution: Even your up-to-date anti-virus software may not protect you from some of the things your may download from the Internet. So, never open an e-mail attachment from someone you don’t know, and be wary of forwarded attachments, even from people you do know.
7. Be Aware of People Around You: When you’re using Wi-Fi in a high-traffic environment, make sure to keep an eye open for any suspicious characters in the area. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s probably not.
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8. Avoid software updates while you’re traveling: If you absolutely must perform a software update, verify the update is legitimate by visiting the vendor’s website and social media platform.
9. Utilize two-factor authentication on services that support it: Two-factor authentication requires you to log in with a username and password, as usual, but also requires that you enter a code sent to your mobile device. Two-factor authentication greatly reduces the likelihood of someone being able to impersonate you just by using your username and password.
10. Use Mobile Hotspot Instead: Instead of public WiFi networks, you can use your mobile device as a mobile Internet hotspot. Most iPhone and Android devices have this feature built-in.
Connecting your laptop to WiFi through your phone or mobile device means you avoid the risks associated with public WiFi. Using a mobile hotspot requires a password, so it’s impossible for anyone else to eavesdrop on your connection unless they have physical access to your phone or the password.
11. Use a VPN:
A virtual private network (VPN) connection is a must when connecting to your business through an unsecured connection, like a WiFi hotspot. Even if a hacker manages to position himself in the middle of your connection, the data here will be strongly encrypted. Since most hackers are after an easy target, they’ll likely discard stolen information rather than put it through a lengthy decryption process.
12. Use SSL Connections
You aren’t likely to have a VPN available for general Internet browsing, but you can still add a layer of encryption to your communication. Enable the “Always Use HTTPS” option on websites that you visit frequently, or that require you to enter some kind of credentials. Remember that hackers understand how people reuse passwords, so your username and password for some random forum may be the same as it is for your bank or corporate network, and sending these credentials in an unencrypted manner could open the door to a smart hacker. Most websites that require an account or credentials have the “HTTPS” option somewhere in their settings.
We hope we were able to bring your attention to dangerous side effects of FREE WiFi. You have any tips to share, please write in comments.
Always remember hackers are actually depending on your stupidity. Do not fall trapped and it is your duty to secure your browser. If you need any help in securing your Internet Connection ? Let us know, We can help. Live Chat with a technical expert for Free or Create a support ticket and get your issue resolved within 24 hours
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