Unsecure Wireless Access Everywhere You Go

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If you’re like me you travel with a laptop and check your email and surf the web in the growing number of free wireless hotspots.

This convenience comes, however, with a potential risk. Most of the airport, coffee shop and hotel hotspots are unsecure, meaning a hacker can tap into your computer and have a look at what you are doing – including entering your credit card as you shop.

“The primary security danger of a wireless network, especially a public one, is information theft. Unsecured wireless networks allow even a novice thief the ability to capture personal information sent over the network without the sender or intended receivers knowing or giving permission,” says Mark McFadden, instructor of the Wireless Network Security and IT technology courses at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School of Continuing Education

I have been using the Linksys WTR54GS Wireless G Travel Router when I travel as it offers some nice features including a built in firewall and standard wireless encryption. I also turn off files sharing and peer to peer networking on my laptop. Determined and experienced thieves can probably still hack this set-up, but not casually.

Another thing I like about this tool is that when I stay at a hotel with wired broadband I can hook into that and still have secure wireless access if I want to work out on the patio or somewhere else in my room. If I like I can also connect other wireless devices such as a printer or PDA.

Here are some tips for securing wireless networks and connections from the Department of Homeland Security


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