By David Kelleher for GFI Vipre
The widespread availability and convenience of public wireless networks allows us to be online as much as possible. Wi-Fi hotspots can be found almost anywhere – in airports, in restaurants, in coffee shops, bars – unless you’re in the middle of nowhere with not a soul in sight.
While wireless public networks allow us to be online when and where we want to, they are often not secure. Few realize that they are on a shared network with strangers and not everyone using that network is online to check their email or Facebook. The bad guys are interested in the sensitive data, such as passwords and financial transactions, being sent over the Internet. Public networks are vulnerable to attack and there are numerous hacking programs that are easily downloaded from the web.
The key to protecting your information online is to ensure that the data you are sending over the internet is encrypted. Encryption scrambles the information into a code so that it is not accessible by others.
It is strongly recommended that you either use a website that is encrypted or you use a secure wireless network. A secure website only encrypts the information that you send to and from that site, while a secure network encrypts all the information that you send while you are connected.
This excerpt is shared with permission from GFI Vipre.