10 Ways to Stay Secure while
Protect your devices when using them on the road
With the advancement and the growth of new technologies, staying connected while on the road has become a common
thing. More and more local areas now provide wireless internet access via
Wi-Fi, allowing electronic devices to access the internet and share data. This all has created a new class of
travellers who are always online, either using their mobile phones, smart phones, laptops or tablets.
But this ease of online access around the clock also leaves people and their electronic devices ever more
exposed to online threats, putting their personal data at more risk. With almost non-stop internet access, there's
a growing need to protect your data and electronic devices against a growing number of dangerous viruses, spyware
|Modern electronic devices make online access "a breeze" when travelling, but they
also require more vigilance to protect them and your personal data from online
Online thefts of personal data
As more travellers start using public Wi-Fi spots to be online, to check their Facebook and Twitter status,
access their messages and do their banking, cyber criminals are having a "field day" stealing personal information
and hacking into personal accounts. This is evidenced by some the recent online thefts, such as:
These is but a small sample of the growing range of online problems around the world, experienced by major
companies. Even more so in day-to-day individual cyber attacks. There's unfortunately a growing market for both
legitimate and illegitimate personal data. You must take serious precautions to protect your data online.
Online security is your responsibility
As a result of these problems, companies have been strengthening their online security and the authorities have
been coming up with more stringent fines for cyber crimes. However, ultimately "the buck stops with you" - meaning
that in the end you must take every step to protect your data and electronic devices, instead of relying on third
parties to do it for you. It's your responsibility.
It's important that you implement certain steps for online security whenever online and especially when you're
travelling. By taking sensible precautions, you will prevent your personal data from being compromised.
Public hotspots are growing in their number these days. From the local coffee shops, restaurants and hotels, to
the airports and even large city areas, Wi-Fi access is becoming ever more present.
While this makes it easier to stay online and in touch with others, it also makes you more vulnerable to cyber
attacks. These public hotspots are usually open and conducted on unsecure networks, where a hacker can listen in to
whatever you're communicating and typing online. Exercise umost care when using public hotspots.
|The growing network of public hotspots makes for trouble-free Wi-Fi online
when travelling, but it also leaves you more vulnerable to online attacks.
Computer Network Settings
It is advisable to enable your firewall when it comes to using public networks. This is done by default when you
have installed windows operating system. But if you are not sure you can open the "Control Panel" then go to
"Windows Firewall". Make sure that the boxes next to "turn on Windows Firewall" and "notify me when Windows
Firewall blocks a new app" are on.
Turn Off All Sharing
This removes anything that you had previously shared. Files in this or these folders can be accessed by anybody
in the same network and can be copied. This can be done in the following manner.
- Open "Network and Sharing Center" from "Control Panel".
- In the settings page, click on the "Change private advanced sharing settings" located in the left side of
- Then under "Private, Files and printer sharing. Guest or public", turn off network discovery.
- Make sure to click "Save" for them to take effect. Also turn off "file and printer sharing".
Antivirus on your computer and keep in updated
Having installed an antivirus program on your computer device is one of the easiest way to secure it from
outside malicious attacks and connections. Antiviruses also come equipped with their own firewall. This adds a
protection layer as its firewall is not easily hacked. Some of the best known antiviruses today include Avira,
Kaspersky, Eset, Norton, Microsoft Security Essentials and Panda among others.
|Take precautionary steps when using your electronic devices in public
and on public hotspot networks, to protect both your device and your personal data.
DO NOT ever let your device to automatically connect to an open network.
Always DELETE your access points as soon as you get home. In your phones, LOG OUT of all the apps that you
really do not need when travelling.
Lock Your Devices
Lock your devices with strong password that cannot easily be hacked or guessed by the attackers. Use different
passwords for all the accounts that you have. Avoid using some simple, easy to crack, lazy-mind passwords, such as
123abc, password (yes, a lot of people do that!?), myaccount, etc.
Always use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) when
Virtual Private Networks secure the connection even when it is on public Wi-Fi. Be very aware for people who
might be trying to look over your shoulder as you are typing your password or passcodes. Also hide your device from
public security cameras when typing your passwords or messages - better be safe than sorry.
If You Still Get Hacked or Your Device Gets
Depending on your electronic device, there are always steps to be taken should your account get hacked, or your
device get stolen. Make note of who and where to call should your device get stolen. This should be done as soon as
you buy it, but if you haven't done it yet, do it now. Keep that note apart from the device and your wallet, both
of which are the things that get stolen the most, especially when you're travelling.
Change your passwords to stronger ones. It takes some effort, but you'll get a peace of mind and better protect
your online access and your accounts. Make sure your electronic device has an auto-wipe feature, or app, in the
case of android.
If your credit card gets stolen, phone or send a message to the credit card card company, to block futher use of
it. Always be careful how your card or its number are used and never let it out of your sight in the shops.
Ruby Andrew’s author bio
Ruby Andrew, an avid reader and blogger and author by profession lives in
Bristol, UK. Since her early years she’s had a passion for writing. As a writer, she could pen down on any topic
that come across. Her areas of interest are Travelling, Fashion, and Lifestyle. She works as a guest blogger for
different sites and currently writes on behalf of Australian