In-flight Public Wi-Fi: Is It Safe?
With US-based airlines leading the industry in in-flight wifi, it’s becoming a more and more present feature on flights. However, what are the steps being taken in protecting users on these in-flight wifi hosted servers? Is it possible to be hacked while in a plane? It is an important question, and we hope to have an important answer.
What You Can Do to Protect Yourself.
Here are a few tips you can use to improve your security when using in-flight Wi-Fi:
1.) Stay connected to secure websites: SSL and Https.
Read and verify SSL certificates. It's very difficult for hackers to break the encryption that SSL provides, but it is markedly easier for them to find a way around it. Do yourself a favor and make sure that the certificate is there to start with, and that a trusted source issues it (the website you're visiting).
VPN: Protection at any altitude.
Use a VPN (Virtual Private Network). A VPN is a great way to increase your data security, especially when using public Wi-Fi, in-flight or otherwise. A good VPN encrypts your traffic before it's sent, and then sends it through a channel known to be secure. The great thing about using a VPN is that if a hacker does somehow overcome all obstacles and intercept your traffic, he won't be able to understand or use any of it. Companies like us, ZenMate, have software and apps that can protect you regardless of what device you're currently using. Whether you're catching up on work email or getting your YouTube fix, you're safe and secure.
Knowledge is prevention: be aware of ‘Man in the Middle Attacks’.
This one may seem overly obvious, but make sure you're actually connecting to the right network. A hacker can provide a hotspot paired with other devices to "fool" your device into thinking it's a known network. If you're just allowing yourself to connect to open Wi-Fi networks without checking on them, you're practically asking for trouble. Remember, being cautious isn't just about making it impossible for a hacker to intercept your information; it's really about making it harder. Hackers, like everyone else, prefer their "job" to be easy. Toss in some encryption, difficult passwords, and a VPN, and you've made yourself an extremely unattractive candidate.