Cybercriminals can interfere with your vacation plans, so be safe as you embark on your next adventure.
GETTING READY FOR GO
Before you leave for your vacation, make sure to include a basic cybersecurity checklist in your packing list.
- Take a light touch when traveling
Limit the number and type of devices that you bring on vacation. You are more at risk if you bring too many smartphones, tablets, and laptops with you.
- Verify your settings
Review the privacy settings of web services and apps. Limit the information you share and who it is shared with. It is possible to modify certain features, such as location tracking, while you are away from your home.
- Install the “find my iPhone” feature
This feature allows you to remotely locate your phone and disable it if necessary.
- Password protect your devices
Your devices will require you to use a passcode, PIN or additional security features (like a facial scan or fingerprint) in order to unlock them. This will ensure that your device, including tablet and phone, is safe in case it is lost or stolen.
- Keep your software up-to-date
Make sure your security software and other software are up-to-date before you go. If you are prone to forgetting, turn on automatic updates on your devices. Many updates include security tweaks to protect you from the most recent cybersecurity threats.
- Backup files
Before you go on vacation, make sure to back up all data, including photos and documents. You won’t lose any data if your device is stolen, damaged, lost, or broken. Your data can be backed up on the cloud or on an external device such as a hard drive, or both.
ON THE GO
Before you travel, make sure you have reviewed the cybersecurity checklist. These are the best practices to follow to protect your data, accounts, and devices.
- Manage location services actively
While location tools are useful for navigating new places, they can also be used to expose your location (even through photos). You can turn off location services and limit the amount of location information you share on social media.
- Secure wi-fi
Don’t transmit any personal information or make transactions on public or unsecure Wi-Fi networks. Public Wi-Fi networks are not secure and should not be used to access your banking or email accounts. To surf more securely, you can use your phone or virtual private network (VPN), instead.
- Before you post, think before you act
Be careful when you post photos that show you are absent. You should wait until you get back before sharing your wonderful memories with the world. It’s possible that you don’t want everyone to know that you aren’t home.
- Protect physical devices
When you travel, ensure your devices are always with. If you’re staying at a hotel, make sure to lock your devices in a safe. If you don’t have a safe, keep them in your bag. Do not leave your devices unattended, or give them to anyone else. Use your device in an airport or cafe. It is important to not leave your device unattended while you use the bathroom or order another cup of coffee.
- Stop auto connecting
Disable Bluetooth and remote connectivity when you are away from your home. Some devices will automatically connect to wireless networks and seek out available ones. Bluetooth allows your device to communicate wirelessly with other devices such as headphones and infotainment systems in cars. These features can be disabled so you can only connect to Bluetooth and wireless networks when you need them. You can turn them off if you don’t use them. These features can be used to give roving cybercriminals easy access to your devices while you’re out and about.