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Monday, October 2, 2023

Public Wi-Fi Usage - Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Cybersecurity awareness month is was created in October 2004 by the government with support from the non-governmental security community to help Americans become better at protecting themselves from attacks over the Internet. You can find more information on Wikipedia.

As a parent or young adult reading this article, we at Hak4Kidz want you to know that we are going to do our best to make a meaningful contribution to this month's awareness cycle. Feel free to join in with comments below. This article will go into public Wi-Fi usage.

What is Public Wi-Fi?

Airports, coffee shops, malls, restaurants, and hotels all have free public Wi-Fi that one may use to access the web. People regularly connect to these "hotspots" without giving it any thought because they are so ubiquitous and common.

What are the risks?

The issue with public Wi-Fi is that there are a lot of risks associated with using these networks. Although business owners may think they're giving their consumers a helpful service, it's likely that the security on these networks is insufficient or nonexistent. Below mentioned are some of the risks involved with using public unsecure Wi-Fi:

  • Man-in-the-Middle Attacks
  • Malware Distribution – Targeting a specific vulnerability in a system by injecting code onto your device.
  • Wi-Fi Snooping and Sniffing – Eavesdropping on WiFi signals to access everything that one does when online. From viewing websites visited to collecting login credentials.

How to identify rogue Wi-Fi Networks?

While many hackers like using public Wi-Fi networks, some may go above and beyond by setting up a hotspot specifically for malicious purposes, such rogue networks can be identified as follows:

  • Network/Wi-Fi name matches a trusted network.
  • “HTTPS” sites are rendered as “HTTP”
  • Names of the Wi-Fi networks are generic – such as “Free Wi-Fi”

Things to avoid if connected to Public Wi-Fi:

There are things you shouldn’t do while connected to an unknown network. Some of the ones include:

  • Online banking
  • Paying Bills or Doing transactions.
  • Shopping on Online Sites
  • Filing Taxes

How to Safely use Public Wi-Fi if there is an absolute need?

  • Use a VPN.
  • Stick to “HTTPS” websites.
  • Avoid accessing sensitive information.
  • Turn off file sharing on public networks.
  • Use two-factor authentication for logins.
  • Keep your operating system up to date with the latest software and OS updates.
  • Remember to log out of sessions.
  • Use antivirus software
Thank you Admin dr0pbears for your contributions to this article.

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