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Staying Secure

How to keep your money and information safe while you travel

Passport? Check. Flight itinerary? Check. Wallet? Check. We constantly check our backpacks, pockets, and money belts to ensure these items are still safely stored when we’re travelling.

We wouldn’t want them to end up in the wrong hands.

It hardly occurs to us that a lot of the same (and more) important personal information is also somewhere else in your pocket or backpack—it’s all electronically stored on your devices. And we rarely stop to think about how we can keep that information just as safe and secure while we’re snapping pictures, streaming music or checking our bank account balance.

Don’t sweat it though. We have some tips to make sure you have a safe and enjoyable vacation without compromising your information.

Avoid free public Wi-Fi.

Using free public Wi-Fi seems like the obvious choice when you’re travelling, but when you connect to it, you could be compromising the information on your phone. When you’re in a restaurant or a café, to keep your information safe make sure that you only use the secure password-protected Wi-Fi they offer.

Update your operating systems and software.

Before you go, double-check that your devices have the most up-to-date software and operating systems. Sometimes those updates include security fixes.
It’s also good to back up your device and remove any sensitive data before you jet off.

Never log in to your accounts on public computers.

Avoid using public computers to log in to personal accounts like your email, social media accounts and your bank account. You don’t know if the information you input in is being stored somewhere else, and you run the risk of walking away without remembering to log out.

Don’t put your itinerary online.

As cool as it looks when you post your exotic location or your itinerary on social media, it could just give the bad guys a heads up that you’re out of town and won’t back for a while.

Turn off Bluetooth.

If you have wireless headphones or a smart speaker at home, you probably unknowingly always have your Bluetooth turned on. But believe it or not, a lot of your information including emails, contacts, photos and location can be compromised through Bluetooth. When you’re travelling, make sure that your Bluetooth is set to off. If you use it for your headphones, turn it on when you want to listen to music but don’t forget to turn it off right after.

Only withdraw money from banks.

If you need cash, it can be tempting to pop into a corner store close by to make a withdrawal. But private ATMs can pose a security risk and can even be more expensive to use.
Make sure to use an ATM located at a financial institution when withdrawing cash while you’re travelling.

Bon Voyage

It’s important to have fun while travelling but it’s just as important to keep your information safe. If you want more digital safety tips, check out our other security articles. And if you’re travelling soon, remember to contact us and let us know.

Hardeep Mehrotara

Hardeep Mehrotara

Manager IT Security Operations

Hardeep is the Manager of IT Security Operations at Coast Capital. He brings years of experience and education in all things security, including an honours degree in Computer Crime, a number of IT & security designations, plus a position as a Cyber Officer with the Canadian Forces Reserves.

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