Traveling is fun, stimulating, and exciting! More people in 2020 are working remotely while traveling the world than ever before, and those numbers will continue to rise in the years to come. Every traveler has their laptop and a smartphone, where they are accessing private information and personal data with the touch of a button.
The convenience of it is great, but it can also be dangerous. As you jump onto new networks and access community wifi, your information can be more easily accessed – and your personal information can be stolen. Tons of people have had their identities stolen, their personal data illegally used, and their private information viewed as they travel through foreign countries.
Because of this, it is now more important than ever to take the appropriate measures to stay safe on the internet while traveling the world.
1. Unique Passwords on Everything
Most people use a similar password across many platforms, and this leads to having someone access more than one of your personal accounts. You need to create unique passwords for every account – and keep them to yourself! Look into the best ways to protect your passwords
2. Protect Your Email
There are tons of ways to safely use your email so you won’t have to worry about accessing your accounts while on the road. An email add-on like Permido can connect to your Outlook and offers an end-to-end encryption service that will keep your information private. All of your data is saved separately and is encrypted so only you have access to the information you receive and send.
You share and receive a lot of personal information through your inbox, so keeping it protected is an important thing to do when traveling to foreign countries.
3. Don’t Use Public Wifi Networks
Public Internet networks can leave you unprotected – and is a good way to have your information stolen. Public networks are usually wide open to whoever wants to join, and the security is often weak. Be careful when you’re hopping in and out of wifi networks in foreign countries because it could come back to burn you.
4. Log Out Every Time
If you are using a community computer to access things like social media and email, you need to ensure that you log out every single time. By not logging out, you leave your information available to anyone who wants it. You should also log out of things like email and your banking apps whenever on the road and using new networks. By not logging out, your accounts will be more accessible to hackers who can find a way into your devices.
5. Two-Step Verification on Credit and Debit Cards
The most important thing while traveling is the need to protect your online banking information in a way that still allows you to access it. So, in a way, you need to open up the box when you need it but then close it (and keep it shut) the rest of the time.
6. Stay Away from Random ATMs
ATMs that aren’t directly connected to a reputable financial institute can be dangerous when submitting your card, password, and withdrawing money. These machines do not have the security that is used in bank machines owned by large institutions and should be used with caution.
If you can, find an actual bank to withdraw money from and stay away from these types of ATMs. Many people have had their information stolen and it has led to the loss of large sums of money.
7. Don’t Share Personal Data (Online or In-person)
This one might be obvious, but should not be ignored. Sharing your personal information can really come back to haunt you and could lead to having your identity stolen, or someone accessing your online accounts. Because of the risks that surround you while you travel, you need to be extra careful about what information you share and who you share it with.
You should try and keep as much information to yourself, like Address, Usernames, Passwords, Middle Names, Answers to security questions, Banking information, and more. Whether it’s online or in-person, do your best to keep valuable information to yourself so you drastically reduce the risks that surround you as you travel the world.
8. Keep Your Items Close
The first rule of traveling is to keep your things close to you. Make sure your wallet is always in your pocket (or fanny pack, backpack) and don’t leave your mobile devices somewhere they can be accessed. Take special measures to lock up your valuable items and to keep things close to you. It doesn’t take long for an item to go missing and, in the blink of an eye, you could be the target of a robbery.
Keeping things as close as you can should limit the risks you face while traveling.
9. Try Not To Worry, But Be Mindful Of the Risks
I am not trying to scare you, but everyone who travels should be wary of the risks they face while traveling. There are people all around the world who target tourists and many people have suffered by not doing whatever they can to be safe. Take care of yourself (and your items) and have fun!
10. Put business address on external luggage tags
Putting your home address alerts crooks there might not be anyone home at your home address. They’ll contact fellow criminals in your hometown to alert them to the opportunity. A quid pro quo is the crook in your hometown will alert the crook at your destination if there’s a similar opportunity. If you order room service ALWAYS ask for plates glasses and silverware for two. Dirty both sets before you put them in the hall.
Carry minimum luggage so that you can travel with ease and without paying extra charges anywhere. Before going on your travels, leave a copy of your schedule with a friend or member of the family. At least somebody, somewhere knows where you’re meant to be.
11. Do not enter hotel room right away
Security is not always your friend but depends on country. Be Careful. When staying in any hotel do the following. Once you get your room card key leave the hotel. Do not go directly to your room. If someone thinks you’re a high-value target they’ll follow you to your room hoping to jump you and steal what ever valuables you have. Come back a little later. Let the desk hold your luggage until you return.
When entering the hotel room, prop the door wide open with your heaviest suitcase, enter the room and check that it is indeed empty. Open wardrobes, glance under the bed, ruffle the window curtains and check behind the shower curtain if there is one. Most people enter and lock themselves in, which you wouldn’t want to do if there’s an intruder hiding on the inside.
Walk with purpose expression. Standing at street corners, looking lost and staring at your mobile is going to attract attention. Before leaving your accommodation, familiarise yourself on a map with the route ahead and walk with confidence.