4 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Use Public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi has a lot of things going for it. It’s easy to use, readily available, and more often than not, free. However, all these benefits don’t mean that you should log on the nearest hotspot. There are a lot of reasons you shouldn’t use public Wi-Fi including:
1. It isn’t secure.
Public Wi-Fi is not and will never be secure, plain and simple. For a network to be secure, it needs encryption technology (among other things), and running a secure Wi-Fi network is expensive. Public Wi-Fi is usually free, and restaurants or coffee shops that offer it are not about to spend significant resources on something they don’t directly profit from.
Don’t think that public Wi-Fi that require passwords are safe either. Businesses give their Wi-Fi password out to hundreds of customers each day, and most of the time, these passwords aren’t changed for months, if they’re even changed at all.
2. You are susceptible to malware infections.
Public Wi-Fi is so named because anyone within range of its signal is able to connect to it. That includes people with nefarious intentions such as hackers. They can find a vulnerability in the network and use it to spread rootkits, trojans, and all sorts of malware over the system, thereby infecting unsuspecting victims.
3. Your information could get hijacked.
Hackers love public Wi-Fi networks because all they need is the right software (which in itself is very easy to obtain) and they’ll be able to see what you’re doing online when you’re connected. Spies can eavesdrop on your activity and steal private information such as your social media accounts, emails, chat messages, and the like.
This is why you should never, under any circumstances, view your bank accounts when on a public network. Hackers can steal your login credentials and take your money in a matter of seconds. The convenience of free public Wi-Fi isn’t worth losing your hard-earned money over.
4. You might be connecting to a rogue network.
Cybercriminals prey on the eagerness of the internet-using public to connect to free Wi-Fi by setting up rogue networks in order to fool would be victims into thinking they’re connecting to a legitimate Wi-Fi hotspot.
Here’s how it works: Imagine you were drinking coffee at an establishment called Cafe 123 that offers free Wi-Fi. You decide to connect because you have nothing better to do, so you turn on the Wi-Fi on your device and see a network called “Cafe 123 Wi-Fi”. You connect to it thinking it’s the right network, but it turns out that it’s a decoy network set up by cybercriminals to lure users in and stealing their information.
Secure your information with Betternet
The best way to eliminate the risks of public Wi-Fi networks is to just avoid connecting to them altogether. However, if you really must do so, protect yourself and your information with a Virtual Private Network (VPN) software like Betternet.
Betternet is a free yet high-quality VPN that is designed to encrypt your data traffic, making you anonymous and invisible online. This means that hackers can’t spy on you and steal your information even when you’re connected to a public Wi-Fi network.
Visit our website and download Betternet VPN today for your devices. If you want to know what makes Betternet unique, just check out our blog.