Snoops sniffing Wi-Fi data

When you’re at public Wi-Fi hotspots, it’s easier to keep your laptop than your data from being stolen. If you didn’t already know that, welcome to the paranoid club.

The risk isn’t that someone will target you individually, but rather that freely available tools let casual snoopers sniff all passing wireless data at a hotspot and sift for e-mail account information and passwords that are typically sent without any scrambling or encryption. (All reliable bank and e-commerce Web sites encrypt your browsing sessions, incidentally.)

The cracker doesn’t have to be sitting next to you, either. They could be across the street, in an apartment or in the next room at a hotel. Wi-Fi signals pass — at least weakly — for some distance. Full Story…

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