Why In-Flight Wi-Fi Isn't as Secure as You Think

Heather Parry

By Heather Parry

03 March 2016

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In-flight wi-fi is, for most of us, one of the miracles of modern technology. You’re on the internet! In the sky! It’s amazing!

As soon as we get the chance, we grab our devices and get connected.

And that’s when we become vulnerable to attack.

That’s right. In-flight wi-fi is not as secure as we’d like to believe—as Steven Petrow, USA Today journalist, found on a recent flight.

Petrow connected to American Airlines Gogo wi-fi on a three-hour journey from Dallas to Raleigh, working on a story about the FBI/Apple standoff over privacy. When he landed, a passenger pulled him to one side and made a shocking admission:

I hacked your email on the plane and read everything you sent and received. I did it to most people on the flight.

The passenger relayed one of the writer’s emails word-for-word. He really had been hacked.

Petrow, like most of us, had assumed he was safe on the in-flight wi-fi. But a Gogo employee told him that in-flight wi-fi works in the same manner as wi-fi hotspots on the ground, and is completely public.

In fact, Gogo CEO Michael Small went as far as to say this:

Gogo recommends that anyone sending sensitive information over any public WiFi network, including Gogo, use a virtual private network, or VPN, to protect their data.

Protect yourself on in-flight wi-fi with SurfEasy VPN

Many of us work while travelling these days, and when we don’t, we’re likely to use our electronics to watch movies, read books or check social media. Whatever you’re doing while you’re flying, SurfEasy VPN will create a secure tunnel between you and the internet, securing the wi-fi connection on your flight.

SurfEasy VPN is available for your laptop, tablet or cellphone, meaning that no matter what device you’re using while flying, you can make sure that you’re both protected and anonymous online.

Register for SurfEasy VPN and try it today—and make sure you’re never vulnerable while travelling again!

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