Tagged With free wifi

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Wi-Fi startup PoweredLocal is launching a national mesh Wi-Fi network that will merge its 2,100 Wi-Fi access points in venues and retailers across Australia. The aim is to address what the company says are some key pain points with existing public Wi-Fi offerings such as slow data speeds and excessive login screens. Do we need more free Wi-Fi? And it seems that there is a hidden cost with this free service.

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WiFi hotspots are incredibly handy. With many folks having limited cellular data connections, or if you're a traveller, being to hitch a free ride on a public WiFi network to grab some email, check on social media or browse the web is handy. But those hotspots are also a potential security risk. So, how can you use a public WiFI hotspot safely?

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There are several cities across Australia that are currently running or trialling publicly accessible Wi-Fi networks. Most recently, the NSW Government has announced it will be running a sponsored trial of free Wi-Fi on selected public buses across the city. But just because the government is backing the free service doesn't mean it's safe. There are still privacy and data security issues you need to consider if you're going to use any public Wi-Fi network.

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I travelled to China for work recently. I'll admit, my paranoia level was at an all-time high; the country is known to filter and monitor internet activity. They don't call it The Great Firewall of China for nothing. Compounding my fears was the fact that I had to rely on public WiFi networks in a hotel. Considering my room had four broken power points, my confidence in the hotel's WiFi network security was low. All this got me thinking about ways to protect myself on public WiFi networks in general. Here are a few techniques you may find useful as well.