Tech Tip: Don’t Go on Public WiFi Until You Read This …

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We’re all guilty of it: connecting to free public WiFi.

Whether it’s at the coffee shop, the hotel or the airport, the temptation to check email and surf the web is just too strong to resist. So before you connect to any free, public WiFi, make sure the connection is legitimate.

It’s not uncommon for hackers to set up fake clones of public WiFi access points to try and get you to connect to their WiFi over the legitimate, safe public one being made available to you. Before connecting, check with an employee of the store or location to verify the name of the WiFi that they are providing.

Next, never access financial, medical or other sensitive data while on public WiFi. And don’t, under any circumstances, shop online and enter your credit card information unless you’re absolutely certain the connection point you’re on is safe and secure.

Alan Edwards, CISM, is chief information officer at Computerware, Inc., in Vienna, Virginia.

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