The AdelaideFree network is as secure as possible for a public Wi-Fi network. Internode has operated free public Wi-Fi networks throughout Australia, including the former Citylan network in Adelaide, for more than a decade without reported security problems.
Internode has implemented a number of security features that help protect the privacy of people using the AdelaideFree Wi-Fi network at no extra cost. These security features include:
Online security is important. Internode recommends that users do not transmit sensitive information unencrypted over any network, let alone a public Wi-Fi network. We advise customers to maintain strong passwords for their online accounts, and change them on a regular basis, to protect their private information. Likewise, we advise customers to maintain current anti-virus protection and apply the latest operating system patches from their device manufacturer.
Network users should also recognise the risk of entering user details and passwords into online accounts in public places. People can - and do - watch, making "onlookers" a significant security risk.
Internode recognises that free public Wi-Fi access is a compromise between security and utility. In order to lock down security completely, it is necessary to "know" the customer (i.e. have identifying information against which to authenticate) which is not possible on a public access network.
People using public Wi-Fi networks should always consciously decide whether the convenience of immediate access to an online resource, such as a bank account, is worth the associated security risk. If it is urgent to access such online resources over a public Wi-Fi network, we recommend that the user should always look for an HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) connection with a valid certificate. If in doubt, use a VPN (Virtual Private Network), which creates an encrypted "tunnel" between your device and the online resource you are accessing.
Internode has built as much security as possible into the AdelaideFree W-Fi network.
However, it is important to recognise that public Wi-Fi networks are, by their nature, a compromise between security and utility. The only way to lock down security completely is to "know" the customer - a piece of knowledge which, by definition, is not possible on a public Wi-Fi network.
The bottom line for online security is that individual users should always keep security in mind when using devices in public places: That includes maintaining strong passwords, current versions of their software and anti-virus protection to protect their personal information.