Public Wi-Fi Security Threats and How to Avoid them
Millions of people around the globe use public Wi-Fi without even realizing how much of security threat it can be. It is open for everyone, and with everyone, we mean even hackers. In fact, public Wi-Fi makes things a whole lot easier for them. They can easily take control of a public network and gain access to each and every attached device. A skilled individual can even sneak in malware into your gadgets, which will give them complete control over it. Despite these threats, most of you people will keep on using public Wi-Fi because it’s available almost everywhere for absolutely free. However, this does not mean that you should give up on your security and privacy, it just means that you need to take extra precautions to stay hidden from the prying eyes of hackers. Some of the ways you can accomplish this task have been outlined below.
First and the simplest solution to your problem is free VPN proxy. They don’t cost anything and they are extremely light, which means that they won’t burden your device at all. Just install these VPN on your gadget and turn it on. This will take you to a different server at an entirely different location, enabling you to access public network without giving away your actual IP address. This allows you to surf the web as much as you want for no cost whatsoever and without any threat from the hackers. When you are done, just turn the public Wi-Fi off, disable VPN, and you will return to your device’s original IP once again. It’s just as simple as that.
Windows File Sharing
If you are using Windows operating system, then you will not even need a VPN. As soon as you connect with public Wi-Fi, a window will pop up asking you to select what network you are using. You will be given three options – “Home Network, Work Network, or Public Network.” Pick public network from these options and Windows will automatically turn all kinds of sharing off, hence keeping you safe from malware. If you have selected some other setting, then you will have to manually disable file sharing, which can be done quite easily. Just go to Control Panel > Network and Sharing Center > Change Advanced Sharing Settings. Here you will find “File and printer sharing.” Below it are two options “Turn on file and printer sharing” and “Turn off file and printer sharing.” You of course are looking to stay safe, so choose the latter and you’ll be good to go. You can then surf around the web via public Wi-Fi without any fear of being hacked.
Almost every operating system come equipped with basic firewall. These aren’t as helpful as other major antivirus, but they can keep you safe from the threats posed by public Wi-Fi. Usually, firewall is automatically turned on, but you might have turned it off accidently. Just to be sure, you should check it out. Go to the Control Panel > System and Security > Windows Firewall. Here you can turn Firewall on or off depending on your usage. Mac users also have firewall equipped in their devices, and to see if it is enabled or not – go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Firewall. If it is turned on, then everything is well and good, but if it’s not, then you need turn it on yourself.
As discussed above, public Wi-Fi can be quite a nuisance, but it is only a nuisance if you are not careful. If you take any of the aforementioned security measures, then you will be able to surf the web via public Wi-Fi, and avoid all kinds of interference quite easily.
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