Considering settling down in your local cafe to do a little surfing or online shopping? You might want to think again, as you could become the victim of cybercrime.
Public Wi-Fi is super-convenient, and has become an indispensable part of our out-of-home experience. It is however, inherently un-secure and when using it, everything you do can be visible to a third-party stranger with access to that hot spot. A hacker can intercept information like your credit card numbers, name, address and more – completely unbeknownst to you. And it’s not hard to access your private information either, seconds after you type in your username and password on an unsecured network, a hacker can capture this information.
Some experts even advise against checking Facebook or email accounts. When using these, information is exposed to hackers that allows them to use programs that actually guess passwords. From here they can gain access to information and steal a person’s identity. It’s fast and it’s big business, a string of wifi hacking tips and tricks are openly available online, so for potential hackers, it’s not exactly hard to come by information on how to do so.
The best advice for users is to be skeptical and to take precautions to secure your information. Avoid making any financial transactions or using credit cards on public Wi-Fi, as this provides identity thieves with the information they need to get their hands on your money. So when we put our feet up in the cafe, its time to sit back, relax and put the phone or laptop away – this may not actually be a bad thing….