7 Ways To Protect Yourself When Using Public Wi -Fi Networks
These days, WiFi networks are everywhere. You can connect to one in restaurants, streets in major city centres, shopping malls, coffee shops, and hotels.
This news is a very welcome one. What it implies is that o matter where you are, you can still have access to the internet and thus, you will be able to surf the internet from your smartphone, tablet, mobile phone, laptop, or whatever internet enabled device you favour.
However, there has been one nagging problem with WiFi networks. Just like the internet, they are not the most secure facilities available.
But Then, What Is WiFi?
WiFi, also referred to as Wi-Fi, is an adaptation of wireless technology that electronic devices and internet enabled gadgets can connect to to gain access to the internet.
The term, WiFi is not an abbreviation. It is nothing more than a fashionable way of referring to WLAN, which is the term for a Wireless Local Area Network. In addition, it is a play on the word HiFi.
A lot of devices can connect to WiFi networks. All that is required is for them to be internet enabled. This includes devices and gadgets like video game consoles, digital cameras, personal computers, digital audio players, and tablets.
When outdoors, a very large area can have access to a single public WiFi network. This is done through a system of multiple overlapping access points.
Security Problems With Wi-Fi
Wired connections are usually more secure than WiFi networks. The reason for this is simple. When using wired connections, the intruder will have to gain physical access PR connection but with WiFi, this is negated.
A lot of us adopt different security measures for the protection of our PCs and laptops.
Most times, the security is in two levels: firewalls to deter cyber criminals and prevent them from gaining access to our valuable data, and a very strong Anti Virus software that prevents the infection of our computer by malicious programs like viruses.
However, what a lot of average users do not realize is that these threats are also present whenever you use a public WiFi network to access the internet.
And this is compounded by the fact that there is no way for you to ascertain if the WiFi network you are using is secure or not.
Public WiFi networks are very susceptible to attack because when they are being set up, more often than not, they are not encrypted. Encryption is simply the process of securing whatever information you transmit by encoding it so that a third party cannot access it.
Also, you can connect to a lot of public WiFi networks without having to provide a password. This makes the WiFi network readily accessible to anybody that might be interested in using it and this includes, of course the friendly neighbourhood cyber criminals n
If you login to a website or personal account that contains sensitive information via a public WiFi network, you should know that your log in details can be accessed quite easily by cyber criminals and hackers.
That is why a lot of clients complain at banks about their money being withdrawn without their consent. They exposed their details to the world, now some unscrupulous character has access to all their money.
Protection On A Public Wi-Fi Network
As we have already established in not so few words, the process of using an unprotected public WiFi network is a very risky affair.
However, you can offer yourself some form of protection simply by following these simple steps.
You can do this via the Control Panel screen on Windows computers, or via the System Preferences screen on Mac OS X.
Only engage in this when you are connected via a trusted and secure connection. This can be a personal home network that you have secured and protected yourself.
This is because sometimes, these hotspots are malicious networks deliberately set up for information theft.
When you first got your Apple Macbook, I’m pretty sure you were certain it was the fastest thing ever invented.
But then, it started to age and lagging set in. The reason for this occurrence is simple: the more a computer gets used, the more accumulated data and clutter it has.
This takes a toll on the processing power and, in the end, the computer’s overall performance starts to dwindle.
This is bound to happen to every device but, not to worry, it can be corrected. Yes, you heard !e right, you can bring your aging Macbook back to life!
Below are some tips that are guaranteed to make your Macbook young and fast again:
Clear The Clutter
There are thousands and thousand of files on every computer. These are mostly comprised of videos, songs, pictures, and applications.
What these files do is that they accumulate and generate junk files that, over time, will rapidly fill up your Macbook's hard drive. Then, the Macbook's performance will suffer as a result.
You should really take a trip through your files and ask yourself if you really still need all of them. One of the best ways to improve your Macbook’s performance is by freeing up space on its hard drive.
Delete Unused Language Files
There are multiple language options for almost all of the software on your Macbook. This option was created for the teeming number of users around the world in a bid to accommodate and compensate for linguistic differences.
However, do you really need to you your eBook reader in Spanish? Greek? Most likely, you will only need your native language to operate the application.
Remove the other language options that are clogging up your Macbook’s memory. There is no direct use for them and they are still consuming valuable space.
You can get rid of these files through several methods. There is an application created solely for this and, guess what? It is free!
Monolingual was designed for the removal of extraneous languages that the user will most likely not need. This application allows you to select manually the languages that you might want to keep.
The unmarked language files are deleted and, just like that, you have more space on your laptop!
And if you ever need any of these language files back, they can be readily downloaded.
Clean Up Start-Up And Background Running Apps
Whenever you attempt installing a program on your Macbook, there is always this screen of dialogue that contains all the terms and conditions.
However, if you are anything like I used to be, you probably just skip to the very bottom of the page where the ‘I agree' and ‘Install’ buttons are.
We have been wrong for so long. If you ever take your time to read through these terms and conditions, you will be amazed at what the manufacturers of these programs request for.
A lot of them ask for the permission to start up when you switch on your Macbook. Of course we click ‘I accept’ every time.
The background processing might not sound like a big deal but when you think of the massive processing power that these programs consume, you will be shocked.
They hog precious system resources in the process of just opening quietly and sitting in the background.
CPU and RAM capacities that should be expended towards whatever task it is you are working on are diverted to these background programs. But there is good news. These unwanted and unnecessary startup applications can also be cleared out.
The process of doing this is simple. Just open the System Preferences screen, click on User and Groups, then open up the Login Items screen.
From this window, you can then select the applications that you want to allow to launch upon startup. You can prevent some other applications from starting up in much the same way.
Repair Disk Permissions
Although this angle is often debated by experts, it is possible that the process of simply repairing your Macbook’s disk permissions will improve the running and efficiency of the computer.
All you have to do to initiate the repair of disk permissions is to open up the Open Disk Utility screen from the applications folder. From there, you can them choose the ‘Repair Disk Permissions” option.
Shut Down Your Compute More Often
Just like human beings, electronic devices also need to take a rest every once in a while. So does your Macbook.
This is to ensure that your Macbook is always performing at optimal capacity. The Macbook has been equipped with a number of tools that will allow it to automatically maintain and repair itself.
However, a number of these tools are only activated when the computer is being turned on or shut down. Therefore, the only way for you to activate these tools is by shutting down the Macbook all the way.
Also, doing this improves the life of your Macbook’s internal battery.