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

The Three Legs of Protection: Antivirus Software, Firewalls, and VPNs

Thought Leadership
Kent Lawson | Apr 15th, 2015

We've all heard about antivirus software and firewalls. But we probably don’t know as much about the third leg of computer protection: a VPN, or virtual private network. In his latest article, company CEO Kent Lawson says we do this at our peril, because the damage we can suffer from not using a VPN may far outweigh the risks of the other two combined. After the large-scale hack attacks over the past few years, VPNs are now earning their spot as the third security leg that is vital to every-day computer security. Read More

New Hotel WiFi Vulnerability

Thought Leadership
Alok Kapur | Apr 9th, 2015

Earlier this year, the FTC declared a critical announcement for travelers: hotel WiFi is dangerous. Many people assume that because they are paying for it the network must be safe, but that is a dangerous assumption. Hotel WiFi networks are completely insecure; the bad news is that a new exposure in hotel WiFi has just been found. Read more to find out how you can keep yourself protected. Read More

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

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.