Avoid Hacker Attacks: Why (Security) Experts Recommend Turning Off WLAN on Your Smartphone | newsletter

For many people, it is no longer possible to imagine life without access to the Internet – and it is understandable, because all social and economic life now depends on it. Smartphone users can surf the Internet via public WLAN points outside their four walls, but most hotspot users don’t even realize how dangerous it is to log into free public hotspot areas. That is why tech experts all over the world are advised to turn off certain settings on your phone.

Hackers intercept the data flows between the terminal and the network

Activating the WLAN function, for example, brings with it some risks. Because if you leave your WLAN on permanently, it makes it easier for potential hackers and criminals to gain access to the device and thus unfettered access to personal data. The reason: According to the cybersecurity company Kaspersky, there is no encryption in public and free WiFi networks – thus confidential access data to email or bank accounts can be intercepted by hackers without any problems.

Hackers infiltrate between the user’s end device and the public WLAN hotspot without the user or the network noticing anything. This means that from now on, the smartphone does not connect directly to the hotspot, but first sends its data to the hacker, who, in turn, redirects it to the network. This gives criminals unrestricted access to all transmitted data, because Kaspersky does not require authentication when connecting to a public network.

Disable file and printer sharing

So tech expert Caroline Lee of security firm CocoSign advises deactivating certain mobile functions before malicious attacks occur on your private data: “Keep your phone hidden from other devices when using public WiFi,” Lee appeals to all smartphone owners. According to my internet expert, this requires some cellular settings in the WiFi zone: “The WiFi setting you have to deactivate is File and Printer Sharing when you are on public WiFi. This helps you hack, avoid, and protect data,” he told me after reports from Futurezone.

Install VPN

According to Kaspersky, it is recommended to use a virtual private network (VPN) connection so that you can log into a public network secretly and thus not fall into the eyes of hackers. Because even if a hacker succeeds in hacking the system, criminals will only be able to intercept the highly encrypted data through a VPN, which usually can’t be done much with.

Security experts recommend turning off WLAN completely

However, Miklos Zoltan, CEO and security researcher at Privacy Affairs, believes that’s not enough. In order to prevent the smartphone from automatically connecting to a public network or to prevent the automatic connection of public WiFi devices to your own device, it is not enough, according to the technical expert, to deactivate a few WiFi settings. According to Zoltan, you should instead turn off the entire WLAN function as soon as you leave the house: “The only cellular setting that should be turned off immediately is WLAN,” says the expert. As Futurezone reports, “Public WiFi is often controlled by hackers.” Therefore, the security expert advises to turn off WLAN completely to prevent possible attacks by hackers on your private data.

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Pauline Breitner / finanzen.net editors

Image sources: BeeBright / Shutterstock.com, Lichtmeister / Shutterstock.com

Brooke Vargas

"Devoted gamer. Webaholic. Infuriatingly humble social media trailblazer. Lifelong internet expert."

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