Staying Safe at a WiFi Hot-Spot

It is often underestimated how unsafe using the Internet can be in a public place, by those who lack a basic concept of security. It is, however, no large feat to simply swipe the information that someone might be sending out of the air, and anyone using the same WiFi network as you can do so with relative ease.

The easiest way to protect your data as it travels is by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This takes your data and encrypts it, and then sends it on its way. The data is decrypted before being given to it’s destination. This helps to prevent anyone from simple sitting in the same setting as you and stealing your information. It makes bank transactions, online purchases, and social networking (just to name a few) a lot more safe and reliable.

The link can be found here.

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8 thoughts on “Staying Safe at a WiFi Hot-Spot

  1. Is it possible to also ssh into say your home server and have communications encrypted as well?

  2. What about things like making sure that your computer discovery is turned off while on public networks and making sure that your public or shared folders an devices are not able to be accessed as well. Though using a VPN is also a a good choice as well.

  3. VPN’s are a good method of security, with speed as the detriment. If you have a VPN at home, you are limited by your home connection’s upload speed when you are using it at a public hotspot. For ultimate security, lease server space with a cloud provider. With Amazon, you can get a server for 2 cents per hour and configure it however you want. That’s probably overkill, though, but it works.

  4. I think it’s also important to note that there are differences between paid VPN’s opposed to free ones. Though free VPN’s to provide the basic VPN experience of encrypted data and slow connections, paid ones are a lot more secure. Your data can be sold out by free VPN’s(they have to make money somehow) and paid ones are much more strict on giving out information. Especially if your VPN host is located outside of the US in a very “privacy strict” country.

  5. VPN is definitely the way to go when using a public hotspot. Is there really such a large difference between a free VPN and a paid one?

    • A VPN is bascially an extension of whatever network you are connected to. I could set up a VPN to my home network from RIT. I could use my internet connection at home here at RIT. Obviously my home internet is much slower than the RIT internet.

  6. Free VPNs usually are restrictive on bandwidth usage and have minimum encryption, there is a very large difference between companies that offer the service for a premium, but do research before you go off and buy one.

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