online security

24 October 2016

Don’t fall into the Wi-Fi trap.

When waiting for the train or an appointment, you quickly check your e-mails or Facebook account. Sometimes you use free Wi-Fi to that end, as it is available nearly everywhere. Nevertheless it is best to be cautious. A public free Wi-Fi network is not danger-free. Hackers can easily find their way to your data.

Hackers are especially inventive

Sometimes cybercriminals even set up a mock Wi-Fi network. If you use it to log on, hackers will steal your details (e.g. passwords). Perhaps they will also send you to a mock website in order to install malware on your computer.

Wi-Fi sniffing is another technique hackers use. Such cybercriminals will then sit with their laptops near a Wi-Fi hotspot. With software and a special Wi-Fi adapter, they will save all the information shared via the hotspot. Then they sniff through the information, looking for valuable data, for instance passwords or account numbers.

5 tips to surf more safely
  1. Install an anti-virus programme of security app on your smartphone, tablet or computer. In that way you will be protected against viruses, spyware and hackers.
  2. Beware of Wi-Fi networks which seem authentic, but actually originate from hackers. Check whether the name of the hotspot is real and links you up to a real network.
  3. Ensure that your device can only connect to a network you yourself choose. In this way you will be sure that the connection is safe. Do not allow your device to automatically connect with just any Wi-Fi network.
  4. Avoid Wi-Fi connections without a password. Anyone can pick up the wireless signal and once you are logged in, you will be communicating through an unsafe connection.
  5. Finally, use your own provider’s network to consult your bank account, make online payments or send important data. This is much safer than a Wi-Fi hotspot.
Learn how to protect yourself from internet fraud

Still have questions about the pitfalls of the internet? Want tips on how to protect yourself? Check out our page on how to use the internet safely and securely, whether it be via your smartphone, tablet or your computer.