Are you a regular traveler, business traveler, or a high-tech adventure seeker? After all, nothing would ruin your life faster than needing to call your bank in the middle of the night to make sure your account hasn’t been emptied. Business travelers are often high-value targets, especially those working for corporations, media, academics or government bodies.
In this article, we will look at how travelers are at risk and how can they protect themselves from cybercrime.
The scale of travel-related risk varies from country to country. Cybersecurity should not only be limited to home, offices, or institutions but also whenever we travel. The more we travel, the more we tend to access the Internet on the go, and the more we are at risk. Travelers basically pose unique cybersecurity threats as they often carry sensitive data, both personal and professional, related to a variety of devices.
The biggest cybersecurity threat to travelers is the risk associated with using Wi-Fi hotspots. It’s not only about the public Wi-Fis, but the main problem is also travelers often do not always take necessary precautions. This is because of the lack of security awareness.
In today’s world, cyber-risk increases exponentially as life becomes more inter-connected.
How Travelers are at risk?
Travelers are often termed as meat for cybercriminals, and according to a recent report by KnowBe4, travel is one of the top five most phise-prone industries. Listed below of some of the most vulnerabilities that a traveler is at risk:
- People traveling abroad are more likely to be robbed of their data.
- Old habits such as going online before leaving the airport and connecting to unsecured public Wi-Fi networks at hotels, travel terminals, cafes, and restaurants.
- Searching for information on the web about various locations, ratings, reviews.
- Leaving their multiple devices unsupervised.
- Being aware of using the passwords, PINs carefully in public places that are under surveillance or are trying to steal information from you by just looking at your device screen.
Don’t wait until the threat strikes. Instead, be cautious on your side.
Before Leaving for the Tour:
We will be looking at the most important tricks before leaving your house in this section:
- Ditch the devices that you really don’t need to take with you and that which will create additional risks.
- Clear your devices from unnecessary data like browser history or cookies.
- Always secure your devices like laptops and tablets inside your travel bags with a combination of locks.
- Change the passwords before leaving and don’t forget to use the password manager.
- Enable multi-factor authentication for online accounts – Facebook, Instagram, Dropbox, etc.
- Encrypt all data on devices. Encryption ensures that when your device is stolen, it will be of no use to the attacker.
- Set up your own VPN as the VPN providers don’t really keep your data quiet private.
- Install a device finder or enable Find My Device feature for Android, iOS or Windows.
- Use Forget Network to remove all current Wi-Fi network before you leave.
- Make sure your protection software includes proactive defense against new threats and not just basic antivirus protection.
Cyber Tips for Travelers:
Cybercrime is a global concern, and some of which are more prone than others. An individual, however, needs to be cautious enough along with enjoying. Following are cybersecurity tips for travelers which would help anyone traveling abroad:
- Lock devices: As smartphones, tablets, and laptops are equipped with security settings, lock the devices using a PIN number or fingerprint ID. Not forget regularly changing the PINs.
- To be cautious of public Wi-Fi: Free Wi-Fi is obviously very appealing for business or leisure travelers, but it is also vulnerable to security issues. Make sure you ask for the security protocols to the hotels before connecting to the web. Being extra cautious using Internet cafes and free WiFi hotspots is necessary. Avoid using sensitive data/ personal accounts while connected to these Wi-Fis.
- Disable Auto-Connect: As most devices automatically connect to Wi-Fi networks, it’s a good practice when you are home but not while traveling. Every time to travel, make sure the device connects manually when you wish to access the web.
- Avoid risky Website: Be careful while visiting risky sites. Often shady websites are infected with malware that can infect your devices and create havoc. According to a reported at SecurityWeek, there were 18.5 million websites with infected malware.
- Install Anti-Virus Protection: One of the easiest ways to stay protected that can keep your personal/ company information, secure while traveling. Always use a trusted brand of security and make a regular update as and when new versions are available. Keep the firewall on always!
- Update Operating Systems: Similar to the anti-virus software, keep updating your operating system as when current versions are available. It definitely applies to apps on your phone and tablets.
- Minimize location sharing: As a traveler, its a common habit for a traveler to update your social networking sites when you move from different cities or countries. By signaling your every location, you make it easy for the criminals to determine that you’re not in your hotel rooms which is further vulnerable to physical intrusions. Limit the information you post online about your specific whereabouts.
- Update Passwords: Keep changing passwords regularly when you are traveling. A numerical sequence is something that doesn’t work- so don’t skimp on password creation. And once you are back home you can definitely change the passwords back to earlier.
- Disable Bluetooth connectivity: Just like devices’ automatic Wi-Fi connectivity, Bluetooth connectivity is also a threat. As the Bluetooth signals come from anywhere, the nearby threat actors can connect to your phone and hack into your device.
- Physical theft of devices: The thieves often target travelers. If you are on a business trip for a conference, the situation has a wider selection of devices that are likely to contain sensitive information.
- Be careful about what you are talking in public: If you are a loud talker, make sure you keep your voices low while talking about work strategies, company secrets or work-related information.
The risks have always been greater these days and scammers love tourists. Avoiding travel is difficult as avoiding the internet is impossible. By following these small and easy security travel tips will not only help in securing your important data but will also minimize the chances of you getting hacked.
There!!! That wasn’t that laborious. Was it? Now you’re ready to go out and explore the world – or just another city/ town as you are going to be safe no matter where you go!
Interested in learning more about the various day-to-day cyber threats? Then you are at the right place at the right time to know! Catch-up our other articles based on the new-age risks. Some of the most destructive ransomware and Trojan malware variants depends on the vulnerabilities in the Windows Server to propagate through an organization’s network. 90% of the businesses lack any data protection for their company and customer information. It is essential for an individual to take a close look at the vulnerabilities as it’s done – through a website, through an email, and through links! For more detailed analysis visit here !!!
Stay Protected and Stay Updated.