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Device Security While on Holiday – Protect users while abroad

It’s tricky enough to protect your own devices when on holiday, but when you factor in a family, things can become really hard to keep track of. Not so long ago it was rare to bring even one mobile device on holiday, and if you did it was only in case of an emergency. With the advent of social media, “always on” emails, streaming of movies and online games, these days it’s not unusual to have more than one device per person traveling – and that can make security difficult.

Here are some top tips for protecting your devices while abroad:

  • Make sure you are insured, and that your insurance covers every device you are bringing. Don’t just assume that the travel insurance that came free with your bank account will cover everything.
  • Be aware of the risks. It’s not just your devices being stolen that you need to worry about; these days people could hack into your device without your even noticing.
  • If possible, bring a temporary device with you rather than your usual mobile. Don’t even load your personal banking app onto it, and be discriminating about what else you load onto it; do you really need to check your email while you’re away?
  • Set up all of your email and social media accounts to have two factor authentication before you leave, and log-out after each use. This might seem like a pain in the neck, but it will mean that your accounts are more secure.
  • Ensure all devices have the latest software updates. Updating the software on your mobile or tablet can be a pain and many people postpone it indefinitely before we do it. If your device is running an older version of software it won’t have the latest patches and updates though, and may be easier to hack.
  • Keep Bluetooth switched off on all devices. Connect your devices the old-fashioned way, with leads while you are away. Bluetooth is really useful when it comes to connecting speakers, fitness tracking devices and so on – but it is also an easy way in for anyone looking to access your device.
  • When not in use, keep your devices switched off. Again, this seems like a nuisance but it will mean that you are not open to attack 24/7. Remind yourself that you’re on holiday and can stand to take a break from the outside world… remind the children of this too!
  • Use the security that’s available on your device already: set up a passcode for your sim and another for the device itself. Make sure your screen locks automatically after a short timeframe of not being used. Again, you might think this inconvenient but it is simple security that can keep your personal information safe if your device is picked up by a thief trying their luck.
  • Invest in good quality digital security. This might be one of those things you consider an unnecessary expense, but speak to anyone who has had their devices hacked or picked up a virus; they will tell you they wish they’d thought to get digital security sorted out beforehand!
  • When it comes to storing anything on your device, keep this to an absolute minimum. Remove all pre-saved passwords, credit or debit card information, passport numbers, account numbers etc.
  • Be super paranoid about what you use your device for; assume anything you do on your device will be intercepted – especially if you are on a public wifi network such as a hotel or restaurant. You won’t even notice if someone has hacked your device and is watching your every move; do you really want to show them your login details for your bank account?
  • Remember that the same rules over supervising children online apply even when on holiday. Keep an eye on how long your children are spending online, and on what they’re doing there.
  • Once you return home, change the password for every single account you have accessed while abroad. Again, this might seem like overkill but it really is a case of “better safe than sorry.” Reason with your teen; do they really want to risk their Instagram being hacked and losing all those followers?

Kaspersky Security Cloud has a range of features that can help you to manage your family’s internet usage, at home and abroad. It provides protection against malware and viruses as well as other security issues. It also has the facility to keep passwords safe and even allows setting up a VPN (virtual private network) which allows you to encrypt all data sent and received on your devices when switched on. Security Cloud is designed to come with you when you leave the house, wherever you go.

Vicky is a single mother, a blogger, a podcaster and a social media trainer. You can find her blogging, business and social media tips at VickyCharles.com.

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