Recently, USA Today published an article on how cyber attacks are targeting small businesses. No matter the size, the product, or the CEO, companies are constantly facing an underlining security threat. And it’s not just businesses, but users as well; remember the authToken scare with Android users two months ago? Even though Google was quick to remedy the situation, there are two key steps one can take to hopefully prevent such attacks in the future and protect data – whether professional or private — on a wireless network.
Do not trust the default network
Wireless networks are a lot less secure than wired ones, and attackers only need to be 100 feet away from your computer to access and steal your data. How big is the average coffee or sandwich shop? Remember when you are choosing a wireless network connect only to the ones you trust and know. Do not assume that the network named “Linksys” that the Windows Wireless Client told you was available is secure, because it most probably is not.
Boost your security settings
Use security that is BETTER THAN WEP, like WPA or WPA2, or a VPN (virtual private network). The VPN solution works well for enterprises, and should be required for all enterprise access. But when you’re on your personal laptop or smart phone, you’re responsible for securing data, and you need to take charge. Anything you do that is sensitive, especially online banking or credit card purchases, should only be done on a wireless network you trust, and only when that network is protected with wireless security, preferably WPA2. HTTPS (secure HTTP) does provide protection if you’re on an “open” wireless network, but this requires extreme vigilance on your part to be carefully monitoring your web activity to be sure that your critical transactions are being handled over HTTPS.
That’s it, follow these two simple steps and you’ll keep your personal data and your company secure.
Requesting a favor from you loyal blog readers:
We are conducting a survey about barriers in transitioning to 802.11n. The survey will take no longer than three minutes, and all the statistics we gather will be available for you.
Preemptive ‘thank you’ to all who participate!