Free Wi-Fi Hotspots and How to Avoid the Evil Twin

(Last Updated On: January 17, 2018)

What is an evil twin?

evil twinAn evil twin is a hotspot set up by a cybercriminal or hacker. It mimics a legitimate hot spot in just about every way.

The evil twin’s purpose is to eavesdrop on unsuspecting users and/or to insert themselves in the various data conversations happening between hotspot users and servers.

Once connected to you, the hacker or criminal may be able to:

  • Steal passwords, account names, etc.
  • View files that are being uploaded or downloaded.

The hacker could be sitting behind you in an airline terminal. The evil twin wifi signal could be emanating from their laptop and overpower the legitimate wifi signal. More.

How to defend yourself against an evil twin

Avoiding evil twins may be as simple as using an inexpensive VPN (virtual private network). With a VPN, you would

  1. Log into the hotspot
  2. Use the VPN in your mobile device to use an encryption tunnel to find a temporary VPN server.
  3. Surf the web using the IP address of the temporary VPN server.

Example of a temporary IP address

evil twinTo avoid an evil twin, you open NordVPN with your smartphone. Click on the country list link in the upper left-hand corner. Click on the country from which you want to appear to be browsing.

Suppose you tested your new VPN out by clicking on the Belgium country link. The signal will go from your smartphone through an encryption tunnel. The evil twin will be incapable of knowing what server you are using or in what country that server exists.

You search for what is my IP evil twinaddress? IP Lookup will give your IP address. Click on Get IP Details.

evil twinYou will see data telling that you are in Belgium. You start accessing the Internet. You download & upload data to your heart’s content. The evil twin cannot find any of your data.

Sample VPN

evil twin

The graphic to the right is from the top of the VPN Special home page. They ranked their favourite 8 VPNs. NordVPN ranked #1 with a score of 9.8 out of 10.

Here are some reasons why it ranked so high:

  • They give you a free trial
  • More than 1095 servers across 61 countries
  • evil twinNordVPN is a no-log VPN based in Panama
    • Panama’s internet is completely uncensored with no government surveillance at all
    • You are guaranteed that what you send and receive is secured
  • Unlike some other VPNs, NordVPN doesn’t log the usage of their users
    • NordVPN keeps no information about what you surfed on the web
  • You can set up ONE account for up to 6 devices at the same time. You pay once on your desktop or mobile and you can use the same account 5 other devices as well.

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Note that it is a great deal of work to produce these blog posts. Also note that I will get a commission if you buy NordVPN from this blog post. Please support me & buy NordVPN now.


Related pages

Mobile devices & cybersecurity
Online fraud
VPN (virtual private network) overview, online privacy, etc.

evil twin

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