Popular Posts

Sunday, June 13, 2010

How To Surf Safely On Public Wi-Fi

FACT: Absolutely nothing is safe on open Wi-Fi. But in a coffee shop, airport, lounge or library, people routinely surf the net or read their e-mails without thinking twice. So the first thing you can do is stick to a webmail system that uses HTTPS when you log in. But after you sign in, your webmail system usually switches back to HTTP because it reduces computer strain on their servers. That means everyone who is on the same wireless network can read your e-mail content. The only exceptions to this if you were viewing your e-mail on a corporate system or using Gmail. That's right, Gmail! Right now, the default setting in Gmail detects suspicious login detection algorithms and makes Gmail a standout for secure wireless surfing. So if you've been thinking about dumping your AOL, Hotmail or Yahoo account, now is the time. If that's too much of a hassle for you, then set up a Gmail account and have ALL your e-mails from other accounts forwarded to it. Then when you read your e-mails on a wireless network, the whole world won't be watching. Also watch out for a common misconception among business travelers. Most of them think that commercial hotspots that you pay by the hour or by subscription are more secure that free Wi-Fi hotspots. That simple is not true! So if your company offer VPN or a virtual private network connection, then take advantage of it. If it doesn't, you can download a FREE program called Hotspot Shield from www.AnchorFree.Com This company offers its own VPN software that you can install on your laptop prior to using a a public Wi-Fi. Once you enable it, it encrypts all of your traffic through a tunnel to a Hotspot Shield and then out on the Internet. It works just like a corporate VPN but its 100% FREE!