Sometimes there is nothing better than being able to log onto a free Wi-Fi system to quickly check your emails, but by connecting to these types of ad hoc networks you may in fact be endangering your computer and all of the information on it. The following looks briefly at some of the many dangers associated with ad hoc systems.
How Is An Ad-Hoc System Different?
When you are accessing the Internet at home or in your office you will generally do so via an access point, which will mean your computer and data are protected by at least a basic level of security, encryption and IT support. However when you access ad hoc networks such as free public Wi-Fi, you are essentially bypassing any access point and connecting straight to other computers and devices, which while being a great way to get on the Internet, can leave your important data vulnerable.
A big danger of using an ad-hoc IT system is that you may be providing viruses or malicious software with a direct path into your computer and networks, exposing your entire system to all kinds of damage. You can at least somewhat protect yourself by providing a higher level of anti-virus protection for your computer, but you will still be opening the door to just about any kind of virus any time you are on an ad-hoc system.
By connecting to an ad-hoc network you will also be exposing your computer to a very real possibility of being targeted for theft, as by opening up a connection with an ad-hoc system you will be allowing others to gain access to your computer. Depending on who gains access and how well they know their way around a computer, everything on your computer may be at risk.
Losing Vital Information
Most business people would have at least some information relating to their clients on their work laptops, and so by accessing those ad-hoc networks at the airport, their hotel or elsewhere on their business travels, they may well be risking quite a lot. It will be bad enough for anyone to get hold of your personal information, but if your client’s information is compromised you will have trouble convincing anyone that you can keep their information safe, seriously undermining your business reputation.
Upgrade Your IT Security
With so much of business operations these days taking place electronically, you need to have plenty of security measures in place to keep your information safe, so talk to your local business IT support professionals about what else you may be able to do to keep your computers and the information on them safer. Whether you are using ad-hoc systems or your office access points, make sure that you are providing more than enough security for your business whether online or off.
As convenient as those ad hoc systems may be, they simply aren’t worth the risk as all it takes is one connection and one malicious person and you can end up losing a lot.