How to stay safe over public / free Wi-Fi hotspots connections, security tips

How to stay safe over public / free Wi-Fi hotspots and router connections, security tips

| November 4, 2011

How to stay safe over public / free Wi-Fi hotspots connections,security tips. I wanted to start this post , maybe useful for someone. This post should be much longer to include all the security aspects, but i’ll try to make it short. Some concepts are only for advanced users, but everyone can read.

Top Security Tips for Wi-Fi routers / Public Hotspots, what you must do:

  • Make sure you’re connected to a legitimate access point.
  • Don’t broadcast your SSD (better) or change the default SSD name with something like a generic name
  • Encrypt files before transferring or emailing them.
  • Use WPA2 / AES encryption when possible (never use WEP !), if you can, use the Enterprise version of WPA2.
  • Use a virtual private network (VPN).
  • Use a personal firewall and enable the router firewall.
  • Set the auto change of the key to 1800 seconds (30 minutes).
  • Use anti-virus / host intrusion prevention software.
  • Update your operating system regularly.
  • Enable Mac-Address filtering (this can be bypassed, but better to have active).
  • Do not autoconnect to foreign Wi-Fi networks.
  • Make sure the Wi-Fi password is not easy or non dictionary term.
  • Use Web-based email that employs secure http (https).
  • Assign a static ip address to your devices and disable the dhcp server.
  • Check the currently connected devices to check if someone is stealing your connection.
  • Turn off file and print sharing.
  • Password-protect your computer (and router) and important files (change / assign a password to the admin user)
  • Change the name of the admin account or create a new user with administrative privileges and disable the admin account (better)
  • Use a “Wi-Fi Certified” device.
  • If you do not use the Wi-Fi, disable it. Enable only when you plan to use it.
  • Enable the https connection to your router web management interface and make sure it is not accessible from the outside (only internal clients permitted)
  • Install your router in a safe place and keep the signals contained.
  • Use VLANs to separate networks
  • Clear your cookies and cache.
  • Do not allow web browsers to remember your passwords.

If you can, disable the Wi-Fi and use a wired connection (for example at home or office)

Avoid online banking and E-Commerce activities when using the hotspot as well as sending sensitive email data.

Use a services like this:
to check your firewall open ports/services from external

Other suggestions are welcome in the comments below

Category: Internet, Security

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