What are the online safety precautions to follow while using public Wi-Fi

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What are the online safety precautions to follow while using public Wi-Fi  19th January 2022


Public WiFi is widely accessible and enables everyone to use the Internet freely. You can connect your devices to it at cafés, supermarkets, airports, and hotels. This has definitely introduced a universe of convenience into our lives. But, if you connect to public WiFi, keep in mind that nothing is actually secure.

The primary reason for the vulnerabilities associated with public Wi-Fis is that they do not need authentication to access the network, which means that anybody may join the network, providing an excellent chance for hackers to target unprotected devices. Furthermore, even if the connection is password-protected, any user with malicious intentions who has had access to the connection earlier can still attack your device.

We recommend not to connect to public WiFi, but if you must, adopt these precautions to safeguard your device.

1. Set up a VPN:
Virtual Private Network helps keep your internet sessions private. This is a technique of connecting that masks your IP address, encrypts data transfers, and hides your location. This will improve your security and privacy while using public WiFi. Several VPN services are available in the market. Do your research before getting one that is best for you.

2. Check the HTTPS status of websites you visit:
It is a smart idea to double-check that the websites you're visiting utilise HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure), particularly if they seek sensitive information like your passwords and credit card details. Having HTTPS on websites means that data flowing from the device to the website is protected with the help of encryption. This makes hijacking your device extra harder for someone with malicious intentions.

3. Disable the file sharing option:
You can exchange files with other devices when connected to your home network. However, before connecting to a public network, you must disable this option on your devices. Otherwise, anybody with hacking intentions connected to the same network can view your files or infect your device with viruses and trojans.
Research online to know how to disable this option on your device.

Other notable Do's and Don'ts.


• Make sure the automatic WiFi connectivity option is turned off.

• Ensure your Bluetooth is not set on 'Always-on' mode. Monitor the Bluetooth connection whenever turned on.

• Invest in a good Antivirus software that also scans all the networks you've connected to.

• Keep comprehensive public liability insurance in India at your disposal (Better safe than sorry)


• Don't access sensitive information such as bank details over a public network.

• Don't shop online. Why? Because it may need you to enter your payment details, which is very sensitive data to expose on a public network.

• Don't leave your gadgets unattended in public places.

The best method to avoid being vulnerable while using public WiFi is to utilise your mobile data or other private networks. However, if you must connect to a public network, be sure to minimise the risks and remain secure by following the suggestions above. Data is the biggest wealth an individual can possess in today's technologically equipped world. So, it's our responsibility to safeguard our private information by adhering to all network security guidelines and conducting ethical activities online. In addition, don't neglect the benefits of cyber insurance and invest in it as a part of the best public liability insurance in India.

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Disclaimer: The information provided above is for illustrative purposes only. To get more details, please refer to policy wordings and prospectus before purchasing a policy.