Remember the days of business traveling with large heavy dossiers and constant worries of files and papers getting lost. Today, with the ushering in of ultra slim laptops, tablets, smart phones and on-the-move internet connections, business travel has become a lot easier. But convenience doesn’t come without a price. Nowadays swiping sensitive personal information and data theft using mal-wares have become that much easier.
Here a few pointers on how to safe-guard your data in simple and economical ways when traveling.
• Remove all data that is unnecessary for the travel from your laptop, flash drives and tablets. Carry only the most needed data with you.
• Download all your critical data in a flash drive instead of carrying it all in different gadgets simultaneously. It’s easier and safer.
• To the extent possible, use cloud-based storage services like Dropbox or iCloud where you can store your data instead of carrying it in physical form. Your data is readily available whenever you need it from the location closest to you.
Secure your devices: You might have insurance for your gadgets but what about the vulnerable and irreplaceable intellectual property in it?
• Secure your devices with complex passwords that are difficult to crack.
• Another option is to install software on your device that helps you locate it if it goes missing and delete its contents from the hard drive remotely at the press of a button if at all you lose it.
• Get an encrypted flash drive and protect data on your laptop with full-disk encryption software, which makes all your data unreadable to unauthorized users in case it is misplaced or stolen.
• Keep your laptops, tablets and other gadgets in hotel room safes when not needed.
Beware of Wi-Fi: Many hotels and restaurants offer free Wi-Fi to their customers. Though it’s tempting, avoid using it as it’s easier to snoop data over such vulnerable connection with the help of sniffer software.
• Buy a data card (many companies like Tata, Reliance, Airtel etc offer these services).
• Secure a VPN connection for your internet usage.
Avoid using Public Computers: Computers in hotels, internet cafés do not usually have sufficiently upgraded security systems and up-to-date antivirus software. They are more vulnerable to spywares. Avoid logging in to your bank accounts, emails or any such confidential sites. You might be exposed to frauds and phishing as your bank account, shopping or email passwords can be misused. Moreover, your friends and contacts found on your social networking sites and emails can be subject to spams too.
Follow these guidelines to ensure your intellectual property is safe from cyber espionage.
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