The PRIVATE WiFi Blog

Search By Topic:

Popular Topics:



PRIVATE WiFi

The PRIVATE WiFi Blog

Thought Leadership | Aug 29th, 2011

Flying Naked: Why Airplane Wifi Is So Unsafe

Kent Lawson

Wifi in airplanes is expensive -- up to $12.95 for a single flight.So one can assume that those who use it have important, and probably confidential, information that they need to communicate.

However, the fact is that wifi in airplanes is just as insecure as free wifi offered in your corner coffee shop.

Ben Miller is a consultant who helps hotels and other businesses with their wifi  installations.

He recently wrote a great post about Gogo, which provides the wifi service for American, Delta, United, and several other airlines.

Ben points out the following security problems with Gogo:

  • No encryption is used for Gogo's wifi. This means that applications like Firesheep allow hackers to steal login information for Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and most email systems.
  • The authentication system used to charge passengers for Internet access is not fully secure. This means that anyone who knows how to spoof a MAC address (YouTube videos show you how to do it) can use the purchaser's MAC address to piggyback on the service for free.
  • In some circumstances, your device will continue searching for “gogoinflight” networks even after you leave the plane. This means that a you could inadvertently connect to an “Evil Twin” using that name, perhaps belonging to a hacker in the airport lounge. Think of free public wifi as "bait" by an Evil Twin thief.

Of course, Ben recommends a personal VPN as a way to protect private communications over wifi networks. What bad security habit will you fix before your next flight?

Associated Topics:

Associated Topics:

Comments

Related Posts

Cyber Security Training Just As Important at C-Level

Thought Leadership
Eva Velasquez | Mar 24th, 2015

The need for better online safety training to prevent data breaches is a hot topic right now. Coupled with stronger computer and network policies, companies want to prevent the hacking events that leave businesses susceptible to a data breach. While it’s no secret that employees in both the private sector and government service can unintentionally expose organizations to hackers, what is surprising is a report by Wombat Security that shows that 33% of CEOs fell for phishing attacks that led to network access. Why are they falling for this kind of internet activity? Read More

E-filing: The Fastest and Safest Way to File Taxes?

Thought Leadership
Eva Velasquez | Mar 9th, 2015

E-filing your annual return to the IRS offers speed and convenience and when coupled with industry-approved software that can plug in the values for you, a lot of the headaches traditionally associated with doing your taxes are eliminated. However, there are some potential dangers that you should be aware of, such as insecure public WiFi networks and online tax fraud. Read More

FTC Says Hotel WiFi is Dangerous

Thought Leadership
Kent Lawson | Feb 23rd, 2015

Recently, the FTC posted an article on their website stating that hotel WiFi is dangerous and that users should not assume that just because they pay for Internet access that their connection is secure.

We couldn’t agree more. In fact, I have been stating this fact since we launched PRIVATE WiFi nearly five years ago.  This is an important topic because hotel traveler’s rank WiFi access at hotels as the number one amenity that they look for when booking hotel rooms. Read More

Managing BYOD Security Threats: VPNs Mitigate The Risks

Thought Leadership
Kent Lawson | Jan 28th, 2015

It’s clear that the era of BYOD is here to stay. Workers are no longer confined to an office desk and computer, and instead are able to do work from anywhere: home, their local coffee shop, and while taking public transportation. The proliferation of public wireless networks has made this possible, and while this has freed employees up to do work from nearly everywhere, it also has introduced many security challenges. Read More

X

Thank you for subscribing to our newsletters

Your email has been added to our system. You will be e-mailed shortly with a request to confirm your membership. Please make sure to click the link in that message to confirm your subscription.