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How to fall in love with WiFi this Valentine’s Day

As Valentine's Day approaches, it calls to mind the qualities we look for in an enduring relationship; trust, security and integrity. Those same qualities will make us fall in love with WiFi.
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Too often, however, our faith is misplaced. But rather than letting broadband break your heart this Valentine’s Day, here’s some common-sense advice on how to fall in love with WiFi once again.

1) Feel secure with each other

Security and integrity are the cornerstones of any good partnership and they’re equally important if you want to fall in love with WiFi. Research carried out by Xirrus found 91 per cent of WiFi users do not believe public WiFi is secure, yet 89 per cent choose to use it anyway. It’s worth waiting for the right network to come along before you commit to sharing your personal details. Make sure you only give your innermost secrets to a Wi-Fi network that has solid security policies and infrastructure in place.

2) A little privacy, please?

Couples need some privacy on Valentine’s Day. And it’s important to keep some things private when you’re connecting to WiFi as well, particularly on public networks. For example, you should ensure that the SSID name and method of encryption are exactly as advertised by the provider; do not enter credit card details or other personal information unless you are using a secure personal network (no shopping!); and make sure public networks have device-to-device communications turned off.

If you can see other users on the network, like AirDrop, Finder or Explorer, disconnect immediately; check the public IP address of the network (you can do this with mxtoolbox.com) and verify the DNS name to ensure it is in fact the provider’s network.

3) Don’t let your heart get held to ransom

People are increasingly being targeted by ransomware and more often than not agree to pay the ransom to regain control of their data. Remember that, these days, ransomware doesn’t just infect your laptop. There are sophisticated apps and bots out there that can get inside your mobile phone and smart devices too. It’s worth being vigilant as the average ransom demanded by attackers today is a heart-breaking £560.00.

4) Prevent those ‘streaming’ tears

Checked into a hotel and planning a bit of romantic ‘Netflix’ action to get you in the mood this Valentine’s Day? Beware! If you want to fall in love with WiFi then keep in mind streaming media remains the biggest challenge for hotel networks. If your WiFi isn’t sufficiently sophisticated to prioritise certain kinds of traffic or if your accommodation provider hasn’t created separate networks for rooms then usage can spike. This can lead to major performance issues. If your hotel’s WiFi isn’t up the job make sure you’ve got a couple of romantic playlists as back up on Spotify, GooglePlay or iTunes so you can still create the mood.

5) I’m sorry, it’s me…..not you

Our research suggests 85 per cent of users would blame themselves if they get hacked, while only 32 per cent would blame the Wi-Fi vendor and 24 per cent would blame the venue. Most businesses do not equip staff with the information and tools to stay vigilant and safe.

6) Fall in love with WiFi and get turned on

Appliances, that is! The advantage of today’s smart homes is that with WiFi and an app on your phone you can preheat the oven, warm up the jacuzzi, or turn on the fireplace before getting home. This is especially helpful on Valentine’s Day if you’ll be picking up take-out and passing it off as a home-cooked meal (ssh! We won’t tell). Creating the right ambiance is also critical for igniting moments of passion. Wireless LED lights now offer warm soothing colours and illumination options that allow you to dim or sparkle with a tap or swipe on your touch screen. Let WiFi be your wing-man this Valentine’s Day!

We’ve shown you lots of ways WiFi can help seal the deal on Valentine’s Day. Now, here’s one where it won’t. As tempting as it might be to check the football scores while out to dinner, glancing at the phone when you should be glancing into her eyes is not going to send your evening into overtime. Remember on Valentine’s Day, romance is the only sport du jour.

Shane Buckley is CEO At Xirrus

Image: Shutterstock

This article is part of our Real Business Broadband campaign, which seeks to provide a mouthpiece for business leaders to vocalise the broadband issues preventing their businesses from reaching full potential. We’d love to hear your take on the debate and where you think the UK needs to make drastic changes. Get in touch via email (shane.schutte@realbusiness.co.uk) or join in on the action using #rbBroadband.

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