The Private WiFi Blog Blog

Filing Your Taxes On A Public Library Hotspot Could End Up Costing You Plenty

It’s that time of year again, when thousands of taxpayers flock to public libraries to get free tax advice and help filing their returns. That kind of assistance can make doing your taxes a lot less taxing, but if you use the library’s open WiFi hotspot at any point during the process, it could end up costing you plenty. You might be wondering how we know for sure that public library WiFi hotspots can expose your sensitive information. We know because we checked.

Avoid Identity Theft When Shopping with an iPad: Consumer Reports Recommends Using a Personal VPN

Tablets are quickly becoming the favorite mobile device for online shopping. Their big screens and extreme portability make online browsing and buying a whole lot easier for consumers. But unfortunately, tablets have become a favorite target of identity thieves. That’s why Consumer Reports recommends using a personal VPN to avoid identity theft when you’re shopping or banking at WiFi hotspots with an iPad.

Top Interpol Official Issues Warning About Public WiFi Risks

Troels Oerting, the Head of Europol’s cybercrime center, has warned businesses and individuals not to send sensitive information over public WiFi networks. As the number of incidents in Europe, where hackers are using public WiFi to steal personal information from users increases, Interpol warns consumers to take precautions.

Experiment Shows How Fast Hotspot Hackers Can Harvest Your Sensitive Information

By now, we hope you know that hackers can steal your sensitive information any time you connect to a public WiFi network. But what you may not know is how fast they can do it. That’s what WAFB 9 demonstrated in a hacking experiment on a university hotspot in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. What happened should be a wakeup call for hotspot users everywhere.

Microsoft Launches “Do 1 Thing” Campaign for Online Safety

As part of Safer Internet Day (SID) on February 11th, Microsoft launched the “Do 1 Thing” campaign to urge people to do one thing to make their online lives safer. A major facet of the campaign is Microsoft’s Safer Online website where people can read tips to enhance their online security, find out what others are doing to stay safe, as well as share their “Do 1 Thing” promise.

We applaud Microsoft for educating consumers on how they can stay safe online. Ready to do one thing to stay safer online? Then take the pledge and “Do 1 Thing!”

Viruses, Trojans, and Identity Theft: 3 Risks to Your Online Security and Privacy While Playing Online Games

Gamers faced 11.7 million attacks from viruses, trojans, and other forms of malware, reports Kaspersky Lab. If you have children who play online games, teach them to not share personal information with online strangers or use parental controls to restrict access to chat functionality.


Should We Be Thanking Edward Snowden?

Edward Snowden spoke at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival last week. The event focused on how his actions have impacted the security community and privacy awareness. Snowden has no regrets and other thoughts leaders think he could the good guy in this scenario. What do you think?

Researchers Show that HTTPS Doesn’t Hide What You Do Online

You might remember that we have repeatedly written articles detailing how HTTPS (otherwise known as secure web browsing) is not really as secure as it seems.

Well, guess what: now Cornell researchers have determined that HTTPS does not prevent third parties from figuring out which secure websites you are visiting. The supposedly secure walls around HTTPS are crumbling quickly.

Your Tax Refund: Still The Top Target Of Identity Thieves

Think filing your taxes is a pain? Imagine not getting your refund because an identity thief got there first and filed a fake return using your Social Security number. It’s happened to hundreds of thousands of U.S. taxpayers. And it’s cost the U.S. Treasury billions of dollars. Find out what it could cost you if you don’t protect your sensitive information from tax thieves.

Privacy: Now a Mainstream Issue

Privacy is just now becoming a mainstream issue with the general public and we at the Identity Theft Resource Center are witnessing this changing tide firsthand. While we don’t have any long-term studies to support and prove this new trend, we can see, anecdotally, that consumers are more curious about how privacy issues will affect them, even when they are not victims of identity theft or a data breach. Here is our take on how privacy went from fringe to mainstream.

360 Million Account Credentials for Sale on Black Market

The security firm Hold Security LLC has just released an explosive report which states that login credentials for some 360 million accounts are currently being offered for sale on cyber black markets.

The sheer number of stolen account has security experts shocked. If true, it would be the biggest single data breach in history.

Honey Encryption: A New Tool to Deceive Hackers

Every time we turn around, it seems, we read that hackers have penetrated another company’s supposedly “impenetrable” servers.

Researchers have created a new tool called Honey Encryption, and it’s anything but sweet for criminals who want to get their hands on sensitive customer data.