By Nathan Strum
This is from Julie Fidler’s article, “What Not To Do When Using Internet on the Go”
For many of us, doing the type of work that we do requires a lot of travel. With that said, we are most likely dependent on Wi-Fi networks around us to keep us in communication with the world around us. Even if you are in the states, there are certain precautions to keep in mind before connecting to an unknown network. It is easier than commonly imagined to steal your personal information or data which makes thinking about the risks a bit scary. You don’t know the people around you; you don’t know the intentions of the person sitting next to you on a plane, so it is better to just be aware of you can do to prevent any potential risk. Anyone really should take these precautions, but we as business owners should be extra careful about confidential information we deal with. Here’s how:
Do not Download Large Files
SmallBiztrends warns to access documents through a cloud instead. They suggest, “Access documents in the cloud, instead. It’s accessible 24 hours a day, from anywhere in the world. Cloud service is also lightning fast, as service providers maintain their own hardware and regularly update their servers, MyCustomer.com explains.”
Everyone, say it with me three times, INSTALL UPDATES. It is very important to not forget to do this before you hit the road. Updating your antivirus software or other types of software is vital because you want to make sure that you have the most up-to-date security on your devices. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology included this tip on their list of what travelers should do before leaving home, so get that firewall, anti-spy software, etc. updated.
Have Multiple Passwords
As silly as it may seem, you should create strong passwords for traveling purposes. Smallbiztrends proposes, “Don’t use the same passwords when traveling that you use at home. Create long, strong, secure temporary passwords for travel purposes instead – and change them again when you return. IndependentTraveler.com points out that identity thieves are patient criminals. They don’t mind waiting until you’ve been home for a few weeks and are less likely to pay such close attention to cybersecurity. If you’re partial to a password or code, the website recommends changing your password just before you leave, then changing it back to the original code when you get back.”
Avoid Making Banking Tasks
Bank of America suggests that anything that has to do with paying your bills is done before you start traveling. Steps like alerting your bank that you are traveling can also prevent them from freezing over your accounts, which is never a fun thing to deal with. Any unusual activity that may be just you paying a bill may raise red flags for your bank possible causing you a headache you don’t need.
Disable Your Cookies
Leaving autofill on or your cookies enabled can cause potential damage. Cookies contain information about past sites you visited which can include credentials and passwords. These two things are a gateway for hackers.
Wherever it is that you are going, always take the necessary measures to ensure that your information is for your possession only.