Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
packedandready

Wifi Security Question

Recommended Posts

It may be totally unrelated, but I find that the Celebrity website blocks most VPNs as well. Maybe it’s a corporate policy?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It may be totally unrelated, but I find that the Celebrity website blocks most VPNs as well. Maybe it’s a corporate policy?

I have no difficulty logging on using my VPN. I can do so using a US or Canadian location, but I haven't tried others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a burner phone for defcon. I view that all wifi is un-secure. Get a mobile hot spot to route your connection through, it may be safer. However, any and all wifi and blue tooth is vulnerable to attacks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Is the wifi secure enough to pay a couple of bills while on board? We've never been on a cruise long enough for this to be an issue so trying to decide how to handle this.

 

There has been a lot of good advice given out in this thread. So just to recap:

  1. The most secure way is not to use wifi at all, and simply prepay the bills before you leave.
  2. Never use the shipboard computers for finances as you cannot guarantee the state of the computers. Trust your own devices.
  3. Banking applications will use a https: connection to ensure a reasonably secure connection with a layer of encryption between your device and the financial institution's web servers.
  4. A VPN will encrypt all traffic between your device and the vpn endpoint. However, that encryption is stripped off between the end point and the destination.
  5. If you are really concerned about security onboard ship, then a vpn and https connection will provide 2 levels of encryption on board the ship and one level from the vpn endpoint to the destination.
  6. No amount of encryption is going to save you if your device has been hacked prior to going on the ship. You are more likely to be vulnerable to a "phishing" attack then to a direct network hack on board.

Computer security is a lot like protecting your house. You don't want to make your house into Fort Knox, just difficult enough that the thieves move on to your neighbour's house.

 

Also bear in mind that if someone is really trying to hack the ship, then they are seeing all the traffic from everyone's devices and you are just one stream of information among multiple streams of information.

 

So unless you are important enough to be specifically targeted, odds are in your favour that with reasonable precautions you are safe for the 15 to 20 minutes you need to pay your bills.

 

Finally, check with your financial institution as to the liability in case of a breach. I am in Canada and my bank assumes the liability if its banking application is breached and will pay back any theft of funds.

 

Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Agreed!

 

If you know what you are doing, and using https encrypted connections (as all banking sites should be) and you don't do anything silly like accepting unsigned certificates or connect to fake websites with similar names to what you thought you were connected to... you should be safe. It's encrypted between your web browser and the bank's web server so packets read off the insecure WiFi will be unintelligible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I should not be surprised that someone named Never Stop Learning would do such a great job with that post. Nice!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you saying it is not safe to use ones personal phone, tablet or laptop onboard because a keystroke logger can be remotely installed and operated by someone else on the wifi without my knowing? Obviously it is not safe to use the ship provided PC's. Thanks.

 

Yes. In order to use the ships wifi you need to log on to the ships network before you can use any subsequent vpn if its allowed. While you are doing this you are vulnerable. Make sure your PC/tablet accounts have secure passwords, possibly rename or disable any administrator accounts and make sure anti malware software prevents third parties installing software.

 

Although as mentioned the risk is low but not non existent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If you decide to go the VPN route, here is a good article: https://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2403388,00.asp

 

I'm thinking of signing up for one myself.

 

 

I get people thinking that most cruisers are upstanding citizens, maybe I'm just getting old. I've seen too many people over the years that were rich AND scammers. I might be a little sensitive about this, since my wife just had someone to try scam a few thousand from one of her cc.

 

But you are correct, it is a personal choice.

 

You may be in for a big shock. I tried using VPN on my last cruise less than a month ago and Celebrity has blocked VPN's. They have not only blocked VPN's they have blocked any known VPN Website. I was on Constellation would be interested to know if it has been blocked on the other ships. It was not blocked on Constellation a year ago so is somewhat new.

 

In order to do some secure transactions I used VPN on my cell phone from port where I have TMobile unlimited international data roaming.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the discussion. The couple I’m thinking won’t be in before we leave are the electric and telephone/internet. Guess I’ll just high estimate them and pay early.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

That is exactly what I would do! (set it and forget it!)

 

Have a great cruise!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You may be in for a big shock. I tried using VPN on my last cruise less than a month ago and Celebrity has blocked VPN's. They have not only blocked VPN's they have blocked any known VPN Website. I was on Constellation would be interested to know if it has been blocked on the other ships. It was not blocked on Constellation a year ago so is somewhat new.

 

In order to do some secure transactions I used VPN on my cell phone from port where I have TMobile unlimited international data roaming.

 

I heard this might happen. :(

It's to bad since the ship isn't equipped to protect us but block VPN's. I wonder if the blocking is due to their data gathering?

We use 1Password, so we have strong passwords. But still...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I heard this might happen. :(

It's to bad since the ship isn't equipped to protect us but block VPN's. I wonder if the blocking is due to their data gathering?

We use 1Password, so we have strong passwords. But still...

 

Pretty sure that most of the cruise ship blocking of VPNs is more about stopping people from eating lots of bandwidth visiting Netflix or other streaming video sites they’ve blocked or throttled than about gathering data.

 

I’ll say again that with the big push over the past few years to move almost all web traffic to use encrypted https, vpns aren’t nearly as necessary since the traffic is encrypted anyways. And if you are concerned about someone in the middle like the cruise line spying on your traffic, using a commercial vpn service only moves that risk from the cruise line spying/being hacked to the vpn provider spying/being hacked.

 

Keep your system up to date with patches, don’t click random links in email, use unique passwords for every site using something like 1Password and don’t install software/browser add-ons from questionable sources and you shouldn’t see much of a problem, at home or on a cruise ship with or without a vpn.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find it very ironic that Celebrity, whose website is a frustrating, incompetent, mess, has managed to bar VPNs aboard its ships with such effectiveness and thoroughness. This branch of their IT team seem to be the only ones who have any skills. Maybe they need to consult them when hiring new website team members.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That is completely false. Your information is never secure on a public WiFi connection.

 

Truth! Never access any of your financial accounts on a public wi-fi connection! This was the #1 piece of advice from a very respected and experienced internet security consultant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait until you get to port and use 4G as it has much better security than public wifi, especially for finance stuff

Cheers

 

 

Simon

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pay the bills early before you go. Don’t trust ship or (never) public WiFi for financial data

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Holiday Exchange - Jingle and Mingle 2019
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...