Tag Archives: Security Risks

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Four years ago, I had the great privilege of standing alongside an amazing leadership team in New York City as Boingo rang the NASDAQ opening bell in celebration of going public. As anyone involved in a venture-backed business will tell you, the road from start-up to IPO is incredibly difficult. In fact, only 5% of VC-backed companies ever go public. So the fact that Boingo succeeded where so many others have failed was not simply the result of a great idea, good timing, sound leadership and patient investors. It included plenty of luck, too. And believe me, every one of us who had a hand in Boingo’s journey from start-up to IPO felt very lucky that day. But in many ways, it was a day like any other. That’s because – as I shared with our team many times – “going public” was never Boingo’s ultimate goal. It was just one more step in the ongoing journey of building a great company. That’s really important. Because if we felt we’d “arrived” on May 3, 2011, then we wouldn’t have been prepared to take on the significant headwinds that blew our way not long after going public. Boingo was built on

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Facebook Takes Huge Step for User Security


We recently covered some of the biggest security risks a user might face when connecting to unmanaged Wi-Fi networks (most free ones), including various hacking attempts to capture user data. One of the recommendations we made in that article was to make sure you’re using the secure browsing for your online services. We gave Google’s Gmail and Documents as examples. There is a setting that allows you to force SSL connections for all interactions. This is confirmed by seeing https:// at the beginning of every URL interaction with that service. We originally stated that Facebook doesn’t yet offer this — but hold the presses! Facebook announced this week that they are adding secure browsing for all Facebook activities. It is slowly being rolled out to all users, so you may not have it yet. ARTICLE: Facebook’s New, Simple and Essential Safety Feature We highly recommend enabling this option on your account, especially if you spend a lot of time Facebooking over public wireless networks. HOW TO: Click on “Account” in upper right of your Facebook home page and select “Account Settings” from the pulldown menu. About two-thirds of the way down the next page, choose “change” next to the “Account

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Is Free Wi-Fi Dangerous?


Last week, the Sacramento Bee, citing concerns from the FBI, published an article about the security risks of free Wi-Fi networks.  These days, free Wi-Fi hotspots abound.  So what can you do to keep your personal data safe?  We asked our CTO, Niels Jonker, for some words of wisdom to help understand the potential risks, and ways to stay safe when you connect to a free or unmanaged Wi-Fi network. LOCK OUT HACKERS WITH A VPN According to the FBI’s Sacramento office, hackers may set up fake Wi-Fi hotspots in airports with names like “Free Wi-Fi”.  A user connects to this SSID thinking they are connecting to a legitimate airport-sponsored service, when in fact it’s bogus.  The hackers are then able to steal passwords and other personal information. ARTICLE: Include Wi-Fi Among Security Risks At Airports, FBI Warns Niels’ Words of Wisdom: “Open Wi-Fi, by its very nature, is insecure. This means that your best defense is a good offense. Make sure you’re only using SSL-encrypted services – which means logging in to https://gmail.com instead of http://gmail.com — or use a VPN to lock down all of your traffic over the wireless network.  Most online service providers like Google and