Introduction: How to Stay Safe When Using Public Wi-Fi on OS X

Usage of devices in public areas is like some kind of cult today. We all use our MacBooks to surf the Internet and work in public places. We are daily checking our emails and always looking for free hot-spot connection.

But, luckily, there’s a way to protect yourself. I will explain how to keep your Mac safe when using public Wi-Fi, just follow tips and continue to share and surf.

Step 1: Switch on Your Firewall

All versions of OS X have included a Unix-based firewall called ipfw. It checks and blocks each packet that comes through the Mac’s network against a set of rules.

To switch on the firewall:

  • Launch System Preferences.
  • Click Security & Privacy.
  • Click “Turn On Firewall”.

Step 2: Forget the Network

When ready with your web browsing, tell your device to forget the network. It means that your Mac won't automatically connect again to the network if you're in range. To forget the network:

  • Launch System Preferences.
  • Click Network.
  • Click Wi-Fi, and then click Advanced.
  • Deselect the "Remember networks this computer has joined" checkbox.

Step 3: Use Safe Browsing From the Third Party Apps for Mac

On top of that, the last one step is to use the Safe Browsing feature to prevent possible attacks. With this simple real-time feature, you can safely surf the Internet knowing that all malicious websites will be blocked automatically. For extra security and convenience, you can manually create lists of potentially dangerous websites that will be automatically blocked. MacKeeper or other third party apps offers the Safe Browsing feature that helps to cover everything mentioned above:

  • Open MacKeeper, choose the Internet Security feature, and then click Safe Browsing.
  • Add the hosts to the list of trusted websites to prevent the potentially harmful sites from opening in your browser.

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