How to Be Safe from Hackers While Traveling
Going on vacation? While some people unplug and get away from it all, many of us still want to stay connected and bring along our laptops, smartphones, and anything else we can think of. Wi-Fi makes it easy to send and receive data from anywhere you can access it, and it’s easier than ever to find Wi-Fi to use while traveling. However, public Wi-Fi is not secure and hackers can easily get to your personal information and data if you are not careful. Take a little time to protect yourself from hackers…they don’t take vacations. Here’s how to stay connected and safe while away.
Before You Hit the Road
- Make sure you back up your devices.
- Protect all of your devices by creating passwords for them. Use letters, numbers, and symbols, and make sure they are long and strong.
- If you are taking your laptop along, make sure you have your Firewall turned on.
- Make sure you’ve downloaded software updates. Updates may contain security patches, and you’ll want the most up-to-date versions.
While You Are on the Road
- Make sure you turn off the feature on your wireless device that searches for a Wi-Fi signal automatically. You’ll want to pick and choose which ones you connect to yourself.
- Don’t use the public computer at your hotel, unless you just want to look up something on Google for research or for directions. The Wi-Fi connection may not be a secure one.
- Avoid connecting to a network that isn’t protected by a password – or one that says “Linksys” only for the name. These are often easy ways for hackers to get to your data.
- Don’t go to websites where you can enter personal information – such as banking or anywhere else you would pay bills. Only access sites such as these if you know the Wi-Fi connection you are using is secure, or you risk your information getting into the wrong hands.
- Periodically run a scan of ChicaPC-Shield™ to ensure you haven’t picked up any malware you didn’t intend on downloading.
The above tips will keep your personal information safe and secure, and will save you a lot of hassle in the long run. As with most things, use your common sense and be careful any time you connect to an unfamiliar Wi-Fi. Don’t forget to unplug a little bit and relax!
Do you unplug on vacation? Or do you take it all with you?
–Angela Skinner Mullen