It wasn’t such a long time ago that individuals thought of high speed Internet service like a luxury item. DSL was magic, shared on business networks having a collection of cables, switches and routers. Unfortunately this technology left people thirsty for much more. Soon after came Cable and Fiber offerings (at various speeds) helps to transform Internet service from the luxury item into a basic utility; a MUST HAVE. Around the same time, wireless technology eliminated the requirement for (messy) wires and switches, allowing office workers a better degree of flexibility and freedom using their compute devices. Beyond laptops, many Smartphone’s and mobile phones began supporting wireless access. But if you’re away from your work, what should you do?
Free Internet WiFi is appearing everywhere. Companies (like Panera Bread, Barnes & Noble, Starbucks and McDonalds) with multiple locations offer Free WiFi. Add to that local libraries, airports, hotels, stores as well as other public services and parks, it’s becoming much easier to stay connected when you’re on the highway. It is not uncommon to locate business people camped out at one of those locations the whole day as they perform work in-between or perhaps in preparation for next appointment. Avoiding unnecessary trips returning to the office is really a key element of productivity, efficiency and saving cash.
A growing amount of local “WiFi Hot-Spots” are maintained through the telephone or cable company, provided to you for free like a part of your workplace or home service package or mobile device. Verizon, AT&T, Cablevision, OptOnline and Time Warner each have this kind of product. More information can be obtained by calling them or consulting their site.
The Internet has a variety of directories that list other free WiFi sites through the entire country. You can find all of them with Google or Bing, looking for “Free WiFi”. There is even an iPhone App called “WiFi Finder”. While many of such “Hot-Spots” impose a period of time limit on usage at various times during the day, its not all do and often you don’t need a long time to perform a specific task.
Unfortunately, there is NO free lunch here. Don’t forget about security. These free / open WiFi hotspots typically don’t have any security or protection available for you, your pc or data. They often need you to accept their “Terms of Service”, that makes it clear that it is your responsibility and you’ll not hold them responsible if something happens. Be sure to take the minimal precautions:
Make sure you device / laptop has anti-virus / anti-malware protection.
Avoid using software or sites that transmit passwords or confidential information in clear text. If you do, ensure the website you’re visiting are encrypted (i.e. HTTPS).
Use a VPN connection returning to your office whenever possible.
The material presented here only scratches the top. If your job has you on the road or traveling, if you’re planning a visit or be ready to be away from the office for a time period , plan ahead. You CAN be productive and remain connected from almost anywhere. Free Download WiFi Key Finder 1.0 For Windows