top of page

LinkNYC – New WiFi Hotspot Program Comes To NYC


After over two years of planning and promotion, the first  twelve LINK NYC wifi kiosks were rolled out by Mayor Bill de Blasio yesterday. The kiosks boast an android tablet where you can browse the web, make 311 calls and free domestic calls. But how secure is this network? Amina Lovell has the story.

LOVELL : Easy, fast and accessible, LINK NYC kiosks are the first of its kind in the city. So far they have been met with excitement.

SCHWARTZ 1: Yeah I think they’re awesome, I think they are really awesome

LOVELL 2: And a little fear

TYKMAN 1: I think we are city or a nation or a world of like robots

LOVELL 3:   In partnership with CityBridge and at a cost of three hundred million dollars, LINK NYC hopes to have five hundred kiosks operative by July and eventually seventy-five hundred across all five boroughs. LINK NYC is perfect for the average 54.4 million tourists who come to New York every year. Tourists like Line Myklebust, visiting from Norway. Testing the promised 1GB per minute speed, she’s impressed…

MYKLEBUST 1: It looks like it’s pretty good. I just logged on to Facebook now, and I was going to try and Facetime my mum. She’s overseas and looking after my children while i’m here, thought if I would see if that works.

LOVELL 4: Any concerns about privacy?

MYKLEBUST 2: Not really, I wouldn’t do anything that I worry about people seeing anyway so yeah. If I was going to do anything “sus” I would do it at home I suppose? (laughs)

LOVELL 5: According to Mark Wuergler, the Senior Security Researcher at technology company Immunity Inc, the system is very robust, but there’s no such thing as perfect security.

WUERGLER 2: It is inevitable that attackers will try and penetrate this thing. Once they are on the network, all of that wireless encryption goes away.

LOVELL 7: So while these Kiosks are convenient and free, there will always be risks.  

WUERGLER 3: You should always be in the frame of mind that it is a malicious network and in order to protect yourself in a hostile environment and hostile network, you want to use a VPN.

LOVELL 8: That is, a virtual private network. That’s a level of encryption most people don’t use. And for now, New Yorkers seem too excited by the free WiFi to worry about their privacy.



LOVELL 9: And that’s precisely the goal of LINK NYC.

Amina Lovell, Columbia Radio News.


bottom of page