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AARP Warns of Public Wi-Fi Scammers

PORTLAND, Maine - Consumers relying on the convenience of public wireless networks can be putting their sensitive personal information at risk.  That's according to a new survey from AARP. 

The organization's Fraud Watch Network survey found that nearly half of consumers log on to free public wi-fi at least once every few months. 

AARP spokesperson Jane Margesson says, while people can use public wi-fi to do thing like check sports scores and look at the weather forecast, they should not be using free wi-fi networks for anything that requires a password.

Really proceed with caution if you're using your public wi-fi," Margesson says. "If you intend to do any kind of banking or access personal information online you want to be especially careful what you are sharing because you may be inadvertently sharing with a scammer."

Margesson says that AARP's Fraud Watch Network campaign is also assisting coffee shops, retail stores and other businesses that provide free wi-fi with ways to remind their customers about how to avoid cyber-scams.