Authored by a Symantec employee

 

It’s barely spring and already you’re thinking about vacation. Where will you go? What will you do? Who will you meet? Vacations are an exciting, happy time for people to get away and avoid the everyday worries of home. But the fun and leisure comes to a screeching halt in the event that your personally data is compromised while traveling.

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Vacations can often put your personal information at risk, due to careless missteps in how you go about preparing to leave, how you communicate while on vacation, and what you share on social media.

Here are seven ways to ensure your data stays safe while on summer vacation:

  1. Install Passwords/PIN on Mobile Device Before Leaving Doing this is your first line of defense while on vacation. In the event that your laptop or phone is left unattended, lost or stolen, a would-be criminal will have a much harder time getting into your device if there’s a password lock set. Doing this is simple and takes little time.

  2. Turn Off Automatic Bluetooth Connectivity
    Bluetooth is great in the car or at home, where it’s safe to communicate with other electronic devices. However, most of us forget to turn Bluetooth off when we go to public places, especially when we go on vacation. With your Bluetooth connectivity left open, anyone sitting in a hotel lobby or nearby coffee shop can pick up that signal and gain access to your phone. This can happen suddenly and without your knowledge. The only way to avoid this threat is to keep this feature turned off while you’re on vacation.

  3. Only Use Password Protected Wi-Fi
    This tip is very important, and one you should not forget, especially if you’re traveling abroad this summer. Other countries don’t have the same regulations on public Wi-Fi as the U.S., so sticking to a password-protected network, like the ones offered at most hotels, is your safest bet if you need to access the Internet. Similarly, if you use a public computer for a quick email, always make sure you’ve logged out of your account before leaving. Look for the HTTPS extension at the beginning of the URL to ensure it’s protected and avoid free public Wi-Fi whenever possible.

  4. Check Sensitive Accounts Regularly
    Before you leave the hotel for a day of sightseeing, get in the habit of checking sensitive financial accounts. Also, check them when you get back. The sooner you spot fraudulent behavior, the better. Just make sure you log out of your accounts after each use!

  5. Leave Smart Devices in a Hotel Safe
    Some rooms have safes for storing sensitive info or important keepsakes while traveling. Use the safe to store any smart devices you won’t need for the day, like a laptop, USB, external hard drive, or wearable technology. Don’t leave these things lying around the hotel.

  6. Don’t Broadcast Your Vacation on Social Media
    As exciting as it is to share your vacation experiences online, it’s extremely dangerous to broadcast your location every few hours on social media. In fact, you’re telling online criminals that you’re not at home, where you may have left important personal data unsecured—and let’s not forget about all the other valuables you have inside your house! Post all your pictures after you get back home and limit info on your specific whereabouts when using social media.

  7. Don’t Overthink Your Security Risks
    The worst thing you can do while on vacation is obsess over your mobile security. It’s not good for you, and it’s not good for the friends and family with you on your summer trip. Be sure to have a reputable Internet security suite, such as Norton Security Deluxe on all of your devices before you leave, and leave the worrying to us!

Enjoy your vacation with peace of mind. Follow these seven tips on your next trip, and you’ll enjoy a secure and memorable vacation.

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Symantec Corporation, the world’s leading cyber security company, allows organizations, governments, and people to secure their most important data wherever it lives. More than 50 million people and families rely on Symantec’s Norton and LifeLock comprehensive digital safety platform to help protect their personal information, devices, home networks, and identities.

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