4 Ways To Protect Your Wireless Laptop At Wifi Hotspots

Posted on 01 February 2010

Wifi connections have made it possible to simply connect from anywhere, at any time. Wireless laptop computers are commonly being used at public WiFi hotspots that include cafe’s, airports, libraries, hospitals, hotels, etc to remain connected all the time.

No wonder public internet is great for staying connected, but it can make you a prey to the hackers and other cyber criminals. Criminals are constantly on the lookout for individuals at WiFi hotspots, who are using unprotected wireless laptop computers, making then a vulnerable prey.

However, it is possible to protect your laptop from getting hacked at public WiFi hotspots by following these simple steps:

1. Turn On Your Firewall

It is very important to have firewall installed on wireless laptop computers. The firewall acts as a barrier to the outside world. If you turn off your firewall, and there are other wireless laptop computers that are using the same network, they can easily get inside your computer and take anything from there, including passwords, documents, and many more personal things.

2. Turn Off Your Wireless Connection When Not in Use

Only connect to WiFi connections when you need to get on the Internet. It is common for people to stay connected to WiFi hotspots while doing non-Internet related tasks like typing a letter, entering data, etc. If you stay connected, criminals get ample time to try and break into your computer.

3. Do NOT Enter Credit Card Numbers and/or Passwords

Although a firewall may protect your system, but it does not encrypt your sent data. This means that anything you send over the network, credit cards information, passwords, login id’s, everything can be retrieved by wireless laptop computers that have data capturing software on their PC’s (i.e. WireShark).

4. Disable Any Shared Files

Just as the name depicts, a shared file is meant to be shared. These files can be viewed and retrieved by any of the wireless laptop computers that are also connected to the same public WiFi hotspot. Thus it is important that you disable any sharing when connected, unless you deliberately want to share those files.

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