Unsuspecting travellers have been the target of a new cyber scam, which hackers use to steal travellers’ personal information. Cyber criminals are able to gain access to this sensitive information by enticing travellers to use a Wi-Fi hotspot that is not password-protected. Generally, these hotspots are set up in heavily trafficked areas—such as hotel lobbies, airports, in tourist areas or even coffee shops.
Once a traveller has logged on to the hotspot, the hacker is able to gain access to his or her information—including private photographs and videos, bank account information and credit card numbers. To protect yourself from this cyber scam, follow these three pieces of guidance when using an unfamiliar Wi-Fi connection:
- Do not mention usernames, passwords, account numbers, etc, in an email or IM conversation.
- Do not do any online banking or shopping.
- Turn off file sharing on your mobile device.
However, the best advice is to avoid using any suspicious, free hotspots while on holiday or in a public place.