It always feels good to use public Wi-Fi; you get to save your mobile data and your access to the Internet is not limited to one place during the day. But how safe are you when you are using the Wi-Fi at the local mall or at your favourite coffee shop?
If you rush to connect to public Wi-Fi, you may be compromising the security of your personal information through hacking. To ensure that you stay safe on your Android phone while on free public Wi-Fi, below are several strategies that you can use.
1. Use Mobile Security Tools
When connected to a public network, your Android device is at risk of getting malware from other devices within the network. Always have a working security tool on your phone before accessing public Wi-Fi. Security tools have firewalls and allow for malware scanning and removal.
2. Update your Operating System Frequently
After some time, your operating System may prompt you to download and install updates. Do not ignore the updates as they not only add new features to your phone but also fix security vulnerabilities that prevent hacking and data loss.
3. Avoid Conducting Financial Transactions without Protection
It is not advisable to conduct online banking or shopping transactions while on an unsecured public Wi-Fi. Hackers might use various hacking tools to access the Wi-Fi network you are using to gain access to your accounts. The worst case scenario is that they can withdraw money from your accounts or purchase items online using your account details.
4. Avoid a Public Wi-Fi Network that is Slow
If you notice that a public Wi-Fi is generally very slow, you are advised to disconnect from the network. The router may be compromised or you may be getting Internet from another device that uses the router to route data. Hackers may be providing their own Internet to “sniff” on your personal information such as login information.
5. Use Two-Factor Authentication
While on a public Wi-Fi network, you should enable the Two-Factor Authentication in all of your accounts that support the feature. Having two-factor authentication prevents hackers from accessing your online accounts since you have to get a code on your phone before gaining access to any of your accounts.
6. Use a VPN to Connect to Public Wi-Fi
To minimize the risk of being hacked while on a public Wi-Fi network, there are mobile tools that allow you to connect to a VPN server as you use the Internet thus encrypting your data traffic as it leaves your phone.
7. Disable Wi-Fi When Done
Always remember to disable the Wi-Fi of your phone when you are done using a public connection. When the Wi-Fi is disabled, hackers cannot send malware on your phone as there will be no data connection to access.