January 28, 2014, 3:17 PM — Here are some helpful tips to protect your data while using public Wi-Fi hotspots. While nothing is foolproof, you can reduce the risk of having your data intercepted or hacked by implementing these tips.
1. Choose only the most secure public Wi-Fi networks.
2. Use a VPN for additional protection.
3. Encrypt the data on your computer.
4. Avoid saving passwords.
5. Use SSL and HTTPS for increased security.
6. Use a firewall on your mobile computer.
7. Keep all of your applications and your operating system up to date.
Public Wi-Fi hotspots are usually open and unsecured. After all, they're intended to be a convenience, so it's in the admin’s interest to make it easier for users to connect to them. Unfortunately, that same lack of security also makes connecting to them risky. Here are ten very simple measures you can take to stay safe, whether you're connecting your notebook to a network in the coffee shop next door, or to one in an airplane 35,000 feet in the air.
Additional resources for public Wi-Fi security
Microsoft: Four safety tips for using Wi-Fi
Kaspersky: Wireless Security tips – to help keep you safe on public Wi-Fi
Lifehacker: How to Stay Safe on Public Wi-Fi Networks