Travel Smart: 6 Ways to Protect Your Data and Devices
Identity thieves and cybercriminals target both business travelers and vacationers. When you are out and about experiencing new places, keep these tips in mind to protect your identity as well as your personal financial and/or business data:
Don’t plug devices into public charging stations.
In airports, train stations and coffee shops, it can be tempting to recharge your phone at a public USB port. Unfortunately, criminals can infect these public charging stations with malware that will download the data on your phone while you’re charging up. Instead, travel with your own charger and plug it into an electrical outlet.
Avoid public computers and public WiFi.
Never use a public computer, including those in your hotel business center, to access sensitive financial accounts or business systems at your company. You don’t want to enter your credentials on a public computer. Likewise, do not log onto free public WiFi networks with your personal or business devices. It is far too easy for cybercriminals to access your devices across these networks.
Limit social media sharing.
Don’t post travel details or photos on social media during your travels. It is fine to share pictures and stories after you return from your trip but don’t give criminals any real-time knowledge about where you travel or when you are not at home.
Limit the IDs and cards you take with you.
Pickpockets and thieves can’t steal what you don’t carry. Leave your social security card locked up at home or in your safe deposit box. Travel with just one or two credit cards and leave the others at home. Keep your passport close to your body, preferably in a hidden carrier under your clothing.
Use the hotel safe.
If you’ve traveled with valuables, lock them in the safe in your hotel or carry them with you. Do not leave them lying out in your hotel room.
Protect company laptops and mobile devices.
When a company computer, tablet or phone gets lost or stolen, sensitive company information could be put at risk. Any laptop or device you travel with should be protected from data loss. This includes a password or biometric lock to start up the device, strong passwords to access business systems (two-factor authentication is even better) and the ability for your IT staff to permanently disable the device remotely.
Identity thieves never stop but staying aware of your surroundings and taking a few preventative measures can help keep your data and devices safe. Don't forget if your Georgia United Debit or Credit Card becomes lost or stolen, you can immediately freeze your cards through Online Banking or our Mobile App, any time.
For more information on identity theft prevention and what to do if you are a victim of identity theft, watch our webinar, Identity Theft Prevention, in our Learning Center.
For informational purposes only.