Customers and Retailers: Beware of Public Wi-Fi

Have you ever used free public Wi-Fi at the airport, Starbucks, Panera Bread, or other unsecured venues?  Is it safe from hacking, identity theft, and other invasions of privacy? No!! So, why do we use it?
According to Ian Barker, writing for Beta News:
“There’s an expectation that public Wi-Fi will be available pretty much everywhere we go these days. We access it almost without thinking about it, yet public networks rarely encrypt data leaving users vulnerable.”
“A new survey of more than 2,000 business users by networking company Xirrus finds that while 91 percent of respondents don’t believe public Wi-Fi is secure, 89 percent use it anyway. The report shows that 48 percent of Wi-Fi users connect to public Wi-Fi at least three times per week and 31 percent connect to public Wi-Fi every day.”
“When on public Wi-Fi, 83 percent of users access their E-mail, whether it’s for work or personal reasons, and 43 percent access work-specific information. ‘Today, the convenience of using public Wi-Fi, for a variety of work and recreational uses, supersedes security, which puts both individuals and businesses at risk. Most businesses do not offer secure connectivity options for customers and guests.’ says Shane Buckley, CEO of Xirrus.”
Take a look at the following infographic. Still think it’s a good idea to access private information via public Wi-Fi?

 

This entry was posted in Online Retailing, Part 3: Targeting Customers and Gathering Information, Part 5: Managing a Retail Business, Part 7: Communicating with the Customer, Privacy and Identity Theft Issues, Technology in Retailing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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