Laptop – checked
Power bank -checked
Business cards – checked
Toothbrush – checked
Backed up files……?
No matter you’re globe-trotting the world to ‘find yourself’ or packing a suitcase for a business trip from NY to London for a business conference; the chances are that you’ll be connected to unknown networks. Connecting to unknown networks puts all the travellers (business and leisure) at increased risk of exposure to cyber threats.
Unless you’re going on a digital detox and will be spending all your time away in a desert yurt or trekking up in the mountains… Of course, these are highly improbable on a business trip.
Business travelers, in particular are more vulnerable than leisure travelers as they often carry sensitive business and personal data on their devices, including smartphones, laptops, and tablets.
When traveling, a number of data security menaces is probable like – your laptop could be stolen, there might be spyware on the computer of your hotel’s business center, a hacker can steal corporate’s confidential information while you’re using a public Wi-Fi, or perhaps a customs official prone to corruption seizes your device.
There could be as many scenarios as possible!
The best bet is to protect your devices, data and information.
There are other than the essential personal and business things to pack; both prior leaving, at your destination, and when you get home to help; have a look!
Travel Checklist for business travelers
Here are some simple practices that will keep you and your information safe and sound from prying eyes on your next business trip.
Things to do before leaving
Here are some of the most recommended actions to take before you leave home to help you stay cyber secure on the go.
Update your software
Just like it is a good practice to update your home and work computer software, but highly recommended to update your mobile device apps and OS before stepping out for your business trip.
Be it application, software or anything, the latest update often include patches to security holes that improve the device’s ability to defend against threats – malware and ransomware.
Install Find My Phone/Device Apps
Enabling “Find my iPhone” help you locate your device if your data-loaded iPhone, Mac or iPad misplaced, lost or stolen; Android users don’t feel isolated, there’s a built-in feature called “Find My Device” in “Android Device Manager” that pinpoints the exact location of your missed Android PDA/s.
Note: If your device gets stolen, remotely lock it, reset the password, or erase its data. You can also secure your phone by disabling remote connectivity and Bluetooth; this way not a single close-by device will be paired with yours without your permission.
Backup your data
It’s a great idea to back up your files, contacts, photos, and videos with another device or cloud service; you never know what happens to you when you are on the road.
Enable Auto-Lock on your devices
Most likely you already using biometrics (fingerprint or face ID) or a pin code to unlock your PDA/s; before leaving review your device security settings once again and ensure that your devices set at automatically lock. Because even if you only a step away for a few minutes, that is enough time for a hacker to access and steal your information; keep it on auto-lock after thirty seconds or other short time-frame you are comfortable with.
Use stronger PINs and passwords
Whether you are at home or on the go, cyber hygiene is always need to be respected; the best thing to do is to create and use strong, unique passwords. Consider using a password manager – in case you have multiple accounts – or at least change them before you leave.
Virtual Private Network
I always recommend my colleagues, friends, and family to be protected in the cyber world; the best tool to spoof identity and web-traffic is Virtual Private Network (VPN). It protects your communication, ensuring that every transaction you make over the internet – right from sending emails to online shopping to financial transactions or you can even stream Netflix – are well secured.
Remove sensitive data
If your phone has any unnecessary sensitive information from – something you won’t be needing on your trip – then make sure you’ve removed it before leaving. That could be used against you in any severe situation.
Enable two Factor Authentication
Enabling 2FA is recommended that won’t let you access your own account on different systems; once you type the receiving key, then your account will be signed-in; social media account need this feature the most.
Now comes to practices that you should exercise at the destination
At the destination
Combat some of the most-common cybersecurity threats while traveling with these precautions.
Be careful when connecting to unsecured Wireless Networks – they are secure, so highly vulnerable.
Avoid public computers – if using, it is best not to shop online, access bank account, or engage in any other sensitive communications as they are not secure.
Don’t just click ant attachments and links – always be cautious about clicking or downloading any unknown links; they are the best lookout for phishing scams.
Stay Vigilant – watch your devices, you never know the person you’re sharing the condo is an ex-criminal or a terrorist; guard your phones, laptops and USBs just like your wallet and credit cards.
Try to use privacy screens – any person sitting next to you – on the plane or in the conference – can look over your shoulder; be careful especially when entering passwords.