The end of year is fast approaching and many of us will be taking a well-deserved break from work. Whether travelling for a vacation or to visit family and friends for a festive occasion, only a few actions need to be taken to remain cyber safe while you are away from home.
Minimise the number of mobile devices you bring with you. By limiting the number of devices you carry, you limit the risk of loss and theft. Before leaving, ensure the ones you do bring have the latest operating system and app updates installed.
It’s a good idea to ensure your backups are up to date, so you can easily recover your data if needed. If possible, enable remote device tracking, so there’s a way to find your device if lost. This can also be helpful to remotely wipe all your data if it’s stolen.
While away, keep the lock screen feature enabled at all times. Remember to do a quick check whenever you leave an uber/taxi, restaurant, plane or a hotel, to make sure you have all your devices with you. And don’t forget to remind your travel companions as well – children in particular can be forgetful and might leave tablets or other mobile devices on chairs or tables.
Connecting to Wi-Fi
While away, you may need to use a public wi-fi network, particularly if you’re overseas where data on roaming can be very expensive. A local or travel sim card can help avoid this, but if you really need to use an unfamiliar wi-fi network at a hotel, café or airport, ensure you use a virtual private network (VPN) to connect. VPNs help protect and anonymise your connection on any wi-fi network.
Public and Shared Computers
Public computers, like those found in a café or hotel business centres, should be avoided for any activity that involves login to your accounts or access of sensitive information. You never know who was using the computer before you, and they may have unintentionally (or intentionally) infected it with malware like a keystroke logger. Only use the devices you own and trust.
Sharing on Social Media
It’s great to update our social circles about our travels and adventures. But unless your followers and friends lists are limited to those you know in real life, it might be best to limit the sharing of your information and location while you’re away from home. And definitely don’t post any pictures of boarding passes or passports – this can make it easier for someone to steal your identity.
Working while on Holiday
We sincerely hope you don’t have to check in at work while you’re away! But if you do, make sure you’re familiar with your work’s relating policies before you go, including whether you can bring your employer-owned devices, and how to safely connect to your work systems remotely.
Your time off should be dedicated to your enjoyment and relaxation. By following these guides, you can enjoy your travels without worrying about security.