We live in a world where working from anywhere at any time is possible; and many people do it. To work remotely requires a reliable WiFi connection. But, how do you know that the network you are on it actually safe or secure?
Even if you are in a public space that you trust, there are still precautions you should take to make sure that your WiFi network connection is secure and not leaving you prone to hackers. Here’s what to do:
You’ve heard it over and over, but data encryption is your friend. The good news is that most of the browsers that we use today already encrypt data. Google states 82% of Chrome pages and 94% of Gmail users can expect encrypted pages and messages. If something seems off, these platforms actively notify the user.
Also, actively scrambling your data between devices is a great defense against attacks. This is because data scrambling removes sensitive data and is irreversible.
A strong virtual private network (VPN) exists to encrypt data throughout your entire WiFi connection. As a result, others connected to the same WiFi network won’t be able to decode any of your information. Yes, VPNs valuable but they are not foolproof.
There are VPNs you have to pay for and there are ones that are free. VPNs that cost money are designed to take you offline if the encrypted connection drops. Free VPNs run the risk of harvesting your data. There are pros and cons to both. But, if you can afford to pay for a secure VPN, it’s not a bad idea.
VPNs are a “you get what you pay for” deal. Regardless if you pay for one or use a free one, it’s unwise to go without it.
The last bit of encryption advice is about your mobile apps. When it comes to apps, you should pay attention to usage as much as installing and updating new or current apps onto your devices.
Both Apple and Google require their developers to encrypt communication, but again nothing is foolproof. Some apps slip through the cracks. It’s important to always be mindful when downloading a mobile app onto your device. Poor encryption or none at all can lead to leaking your sensitive data.
A good practice is to download security patches immediately upon availability. This preventative measure helps combat any vulnerabilities.
Typically, with all of the guidelines in place, downloading apps from either the Apple Store or Google Play will be secure. Be mindful of any apps that you can download outside of these app stores. The outside apps are the ones that run high risk for malware on your devices
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