sys·ad·min·ol·o·gy [sis-ad-mih-nol-uh-jee]

noun

  1. The scientific study of system administration and related phenomena.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Open Wireless Networks: To Connect Or Not Connect?

How many of us have seen an open network in the wireless network list, and decided to have a poke around? Thankfully, unprotected Wireless networks are becoming fewer and fewer, but when presented with an open wireless network, how many of us can resist the temptation and see if we can get an Internet connection?


Thought so :D Legal issues aside, using open wireless networks is not just a security risk because its open (anyone could sniff the packets you send or receive) but also, that you don't know what lurks between you and the web server you might be communicating with.

For example, it wouldn't be difficult for someone to set  up a open wireless network, and make sure that www.yourbank.com points at a website of his/her creation. You enter your details, and they are instantly captured. The same could be done with VPN credentials, or any other sensitive information you happen to transmit over the open wireless network.

The lesson? Don't use open wireless networks for anything that involves transmitting sensitive data, including ANY usernames and passwords, you may get less convenience than you bargained for!

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