In these days, open and free Wi-Fi hotspots zones are available here and there. We can avail free Wi-Fi in different Rail stations, Transports, Multiplex and so on. In any case, do you ever realize that these open Wi-Fi hotspots are not secure? So, you should be careful enough about your own information so that those can’t be stolen from these unsecured systems. There are very high chances of getting your personal info stolen if are not well aware of “How to use Public Wi-Fi safely”. Here are the important points to follow:
1. Turn Off Network Sharing
Before accessing a public Wi-Fi, don’t forget to turn off network sharing feature of your PC/laptop. Otherwise, you may be a victim of data theft. Data can be theft by anyone on a shared network, no need to become a hacker for this. must check your network sharing options before you connect yourself to a public Wi-Fi network.
2. Start Using VPN
VPN (Virtual Private Network) is one of the best secure ways to browse the internet privately on a public network. It will route your traffic through a secure tunnel. VPN services are paid and should be a paid service. Though, few companies provide free VPN. e.g. Proxpn (https://www.proxpn.com), Hotspot Shield (http://hotspotshield.com/), Free VPN (http://www.thefreevpn.com/). Download any of them or the best thing is buy a premium VPN service and use.
Also useful: How to kick off someone from your network anytime
3. Don’t Allow to Connect Automatically
Do not allow your Smartphone or Tablet to connect to an open Wi-Fi Network automatically. When you turn on Wi-Fi, they tend to connect to nearest and strongest open network. Be aware, that may be a trap for you. Choose and connect the network precisely. Otherwise, all the details of your bank accounts and important data might be stolen by a hacker.
Also useful: Check who is connected to your network
4. Use Complicated Passwords
Never use an easy and predictable password. Never store or save the user name and passwords in your browser. Always use the complicated passwords. You can use password generator service to generate a strong password.For that, you can use services like:
For that, you can use services like:
- KeePass Password Safe (http://keepass.info/)
- LastPass (https://lastpass.com/)
Both KeePass and LastPass are totally free to use. They store your information in different ways. LastPass stores your credentials in the cloud where as KeePass keeps an encrypted database file on the local computer of the user. Both services are completely secure and free for all.
5. Two-Factor Authentication in Gmail Account
If you are a regular user of different free public wi-fi network, and there if you regularly log in to your email account, then for sure your email account is under threat. You must enable two-factor authentication for your email (Gmail or any personal email) accounts. As it requires your mobile OTP to log in, so it would be a tough task for a hacker to break such. However, don’t use the same user name and password to every account.
Also useful: How to Configure Gmail POP3 Email Settings
6. Turn On Firewall to Stay Safe in Public Wi-fi
Firewall is not always capable of blocking hackers from getting access to your personal data, but it can put a challenge in front of them and that is also a plus point for you. Most operating systems (like Windows, Ubuntu and etc.) come with inbuilt Firewall program. Always turn on the Firewall setting to add an extra layer of security to your network and PC.
7. Get a Good & Updated Antivirus
It is mandatory for a general PC user to have an internet security/antivirus program installed on the PC. You can find the best antivirus program from here and update the virus database and definitions to keep your PC updated with time from the latest vulnerabilities. This antivirus software can block unwanted or unknown network traffic and keep you safe when browsing the internet in a free public network.
Above all, if you always prefer to browse the internet in Private or Incognito mode, then it will help you to stay safe on a public wi-fi network.