There are a staggering number of businesses that offer free Wifi. For me, this has always been an attractive option when deciding where to eat, or hang out. However, the appeal of the free and easy access can also draw those who have more malicious purposes.

Here are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind before partaking:

Sharing is not caring:

Make sure your ‘Sharing’ settings are turned off. Here’s a quick walkthrough on YouTube about turning the file sharing feature off.  The file sharing setting can be exploited by hackers, allowing them to gain access to your system, and possibly plant malware.

Do you really need Wi-fi right now?

Turn off your Wi-fi when you are not actively using it. If you are doing something that does not require an internet connection, such as reading offline documents or playing games; turn off Wi-fi. This will give your laptop battery a longer life and will give potential intruders less of a reason to infiltrate your device.

Download what you need before you need it:

If you plan to spend some of your downtime in an airport writing papers, or research articles; pre-research and download any necessary reading material needed to successfully complete your assignment. This way, you can be absolutely sure to spend the least amount of time (if any) vulnerable on Public Wi-fi.

Pre-plan your defense:

You need a firewall, anti-malware, and anti-virus program. With so many routes and exploits being found by hackers these days; we need to build a strong defense on all fronts. TDI provides Wireless Protection implemented by cyber-security experts. If you’re looking to step up your Wireless security, check them out here.