How secure is free wi-fi?

  NJ4959 16:14 08 Feb 10

There seems to be loads of places offering free wi-fi (hotels, coffee bars etc) but they all seem to say that their connection is not secure and others may be able to see what you are doing. If you have up to date internet security (Norton, McAfee etc) on your laptop will these stop others from seeing you?

  Technotiger 16:41 08 Feb 10

No, .... and what they mean is that, others may be able to 'see' you if your own Wifi capability is not protected.

  DieSse 18:58 08 Feb 10

If you have up to date Internet security, it should stop anyone from interfering with data on your system - but an insecure Wi-Fi will potentially let anyone with the right equipment look at the data streams to and from your system.

  DieSse 19:00 08 Feb 10

You should also ensure that in your network setup, "File & Printer Sharing for MS Networks" is UNticked.

  Woolwell 19:38 08 Feb 10

Vista and my security suite ask whether this is a public network and set everything accordingly.
You have to be careful. I wouldn't do on-line banking for instance in such a location. Great though for general browsing and retrieving e-mails.

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