For those who call New York home, they are getting some big news these days when it comes to the Internet. There is a new program called LinkNYC that is providing free internet to those who are traveling to New York or call New York home. It is completely free, according to what everyone is saying. But, is it really free?
Free Internet: Is There Such a Thing?
While most people are super excited about this opportunity for those who live in New York, there are those who are suspicious of this offer. And for good reason it would seem. A local civil group, New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) has already pointed out there are several flaws with this free Internet offer. The executive director of the group, Donna Lieberman stated:
“FREE PUBLIC WI-FI CAN BE AN INVALUABLE RESOURCE FOR THIS CITY, BUT NEW YORKERS NEED TO KNOW THERE ARE TOO MANY STRINGS ATTACHED.”
The main string that is being spoken of, is the way in which the information of those who utilize this Wi-Fi connection is going to be filed away. Meaning, that those who utilize this free Internet are not only going to be seen as to what they do online, but other vital information can be taken from each user.
The Information that is Being Gathered
When a person wants to utilize this free Internet, they do have to sign up with their email address, one piece of personal information already being involved. However, to continue to use this internet, a person has to agree to the terms and conditions. Within these terms and conditions, the Wi-Fi portal company, CityBridge, is given the right to see what websites you visit, what links you click on, the time that you spend on websites and the like. The company is stating that they will not be selling any information to third parties, but they will provide this information to the law enforcement if it is requested. However, what is to say that someone cannot access their servers in order to get this personal information about you? This is a real fear that many people are having.
So what can you do? Through free internet throughout New York is a great thing, people should be prepared to start utilizing a VPN while they are using this connection. A VPN can go a long way in keeping your information safe. While you will still have to sign up with an email address for access to the Wi-Fi that is being offered throughout New York, you are still being safer with the VPN.
There are several VPN’s on the market, you can read our best VPN reviews to find the one VPN that is going to fit your needs the best. The key is to get protected. Though free Internet is a dream for many people, realize that this dream is going to come with several security issues that you must take care of before using.