Affinity Consulting Blog

There are many ways to get on-line today. Our homes and offices all have Wi-Fi. And most of us carry smart phones with the ability to function as Wi-Fi hotspots. However, phone tethering comes with considerable battery drain while eating through our precious and expensive monthly data allowance. Finding a Wi-Fi hotspot is a more economical option.

Today, many national chains of coffee shops, restaurants, and retailers offer free Wi-Fi. The always useful site, Lifehacker, just published a list of chains offering free Wi-Fi. Even Jiffy Lube is on the list, as I discovered a couple of weeks ago when I took my wife's car in for an oil change.

But keep in mind that these are "open" Wi-Fi networks. They are not locked down the way your home and office networks (hopefully) are. Anything you transmit that involves confidential data or includes a login and password should be protected. The best way is to use a VPN service. There are many out there, some free and some paid.

Whenever I connect to an open Wi-Fi hotspot, I use a paid VPN service called Witopia. It works with all of my devices (PC, iPad, Android tablet and phone, and Chromebook). For other VPN options, read this Lifehacker article. My personal view is that lawyers should not connect to open Wi-Fi networks without using a VPN service.

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