What Is a Captive Portal?
It’s a time to be alive! Internet is often available whenever we go even if you do not have cellular data on! Public Wi-Fi is everywhere and all you have to do is connect and you’re online! However, there’s a crucial step that you have to perform before you can go online on most public internet.
Most public Wi-Fi hotspots now have a page where they ask you to agree to a certain “Terms” before they will let you go online. That’s called a captive portal / splash page. Read below to see how your device detects that page and gets to display it.
How Automatic Detection of Captive Portal Works
Technically speaking, an authentication screen is displayed when a wireless user is not authorized to access the network resources. The authentication page is called a captive portal login page.
A captive portal can be triggered on the client device in 2 ways:
- DNS Redirection
- HTTP redirect to a splash page
Captive portals are not only used to authenticate / restrict users to connect. They can also “interact” with the users. Some public Wi-Fi networks can disconnect you for a certain amount of time. Others can cut you off after an hour, some can cut you off after you’ve reached a specific amount of data usage, and some are just too slow!
Captive Portals and Security – VPNs in the Detection Process
Whenever you’re using a VPN on your device and have to connect to a Wi-Fi hotspot with a captive portal, you need to disconnect the VPN to get the splash page. That exposes you to security risks.
Most public internet connections allow their users to pay to get rid of the limitations or advertising splash screens every now and then. But captive portal pages should not interrupt your VoIP calls or the other activities you may be doing.
For seamless and secure Internet connectivity even with captive portals, we recommend you use Speedify bonding VPN. Unlike all the other VPN services available, Speedify can make the difference between a direct Internet connection and one that requires to display a splash / login page. When you join a WiFi hotspot with a captive portal:
- Speedify will show you a notification asking you if you want to login.
- In the meantime, your other ongoing online activities (like Skype / Slack calls, streaming, gaming) will continue to work via the cellular connection, protected by Speedify
- If you click the notification (or the message in the app), Speedify will pop up the login screen in a window.
- After you login successfully, Speedify will immediately start using the WiFi connection.
The best thing about Speedify is that it uses channel bonding technology to combine multiple Internet connections at once. This is how it can seamlessly provide protection when logging in on captive portals.
Secure Captive Portal Detection – Don’t Leave Speedify VPN Behind
As discussed, you can finally be able to easily use a public internet connection securely. Speedify offers a reliable and secure connection for anyone who wants to stay safe when going online.
Speedify offers encryption tailored to your device. If your processor does not support AES acceleration, Speedify will use the ChaCha encryption algorithm to deliver fast, secure performance, which works even on older phones.
Safely browse the internet without compromising your speed and reliability using Speedify.