As many businesses from coffeehouses to hotels and airports now offer free public Internet connections, or Wi-Fi hotspots.
But how safe is it to go online at hotspot?
Hackers set up fake hotspots
Did you know you’re actually connecting into a computer network with strangers? And a hacker can get at personal information that you provide, or even trick you into connecting to a fake hotspot.
Consumer Reports suggest that before logging on to public Wi-Fi, be sure to confirm the name of the wireless network connection.
Look for “https” in address bar
To be safe, don’t send personal information like a login wirecard number or bank account login password unless you see the letters “https” in the address bar and not simply “http.” The “s” means the data leaving your computer is sent securely.
But your best protection when you’re connected to a public hotspot is just not to send any personal information at all.
Another important step to take to keep your information secure at public hotspots. You should disable your laptop’s file and printer sharing features. This will prevent people on the wireless network from gaining access to your personal documents. Check your computer’s Help menu to find out how to do this.