Whether in a public library, coffee shop, or train station, a public WiFi can be accessed at any time of the day. You are free to use it to send emails, attend video calls, and much more. But, the question is, should you? Though it might be convenient at times, accessing a public WiFi network can be really risky. There are plenty of reasons why we are saying this. We have talked about all of them in this post. Along with that, we have mentioned what you can do about it. Thus, wait no more and go through this 5-minute read.
Why You Should Not Use Public WiFi Network?
Every time when you try to access the internet in public places, the device that you have connected establishes a link. This link gets established with the server that is helping you to connect to the internet.
In this case, MITM or Man-in-the-Middle attack occurs. This attack refers to a situation where a hacker or unauthorized user places himself between you and the connection point. In other words, this mean, every file that you are sending is not exactly going where it needs to; instead, it is going to the hacker.
This situation puts hackers in a position where they can easily steal your login details, transfer money; open your personal chats, and much more.
This is a well aware disadvantage that can come if you connect to a public WiFi network. If a hacker gains access to your device, they won’t think twice before infecting it with viruses and other malicious software.
In fact, you might not be aware of it but some hackers or unauthorized users can hack the connection point itself and send you fake pop-ups, messages, calls, etc. The worst thing about this is that you won’t even get to know when your device got infected.
Another reason why you should not connect to public WiFi network is because hackers can eavesdrop on unsecured public network without having the need of consent. With the help of special software, a hacker that has accessed your network can see exactly what you are doing online, be it watching videos, chatting to your loves ones, sending photos, etc.
At times, the hackers can also read your browsing history. But, if you are lucky, then he would just stop at accessing the login details of your personal data.
Evil Twin Attack
This attack basically means that a cybercriminal will set up malicious WiFi hotspot, often with the objective to steal your data. You might have noticed yourself trying to connect to hotspot that seems a little attractive. Well, guess what? They were made with this intention.
Cybercriminals are known to set up such hotspots with the objective of recording information that is passing through it. In order to create a fake access point, hackers out there set up their own free hotspots mainly with the name of a famous place.
As soon as you connect your device to this type of hotspot, your personal information will get accessed, even passwords and banking details. Trust us, from there, you can’t go back.
Now that you are aware of the reasons why you should not connect to a public WiFi network, read the next section to find out how you can keep yourself protected.
What to Do While Accessing Public WiFi Network?
VPN or Virtual Private Network connected should be enabled on your device while you are trying to connect to a public WiFi network. Even if a hacker puts himself in the middle of your device and the connection, your data will be strongly encrypted. This means that he won’t be able to access your personal information without your consent.
Turn Off Sharing
This is another thing that you can do in order to keep your device protected while accessing a public WiFi. You can go to the Control Panel of your device and turn off the sharing option. Once done, choose the Public option.
Keep WiFi Off If Not in Need
Although you might have not actively connected to a network, the hardware in your computer is still somewhere down the line transmitting data. Therefore, it is recommended that when you are not using the public WiFi network; keep the WiFi on your mobile device off. Trust us, this one little thing will work wonders for you.
The Bottom Line
And with, our guide is concluding here. Hopefully, now you have the answer to the question “Why connecting your device a public WiFi network can be dangerous?”