While traveling internationally is exciting, it's important to understand that every country has its own unique sets of risks and cultural issues. The better you understand and prepare for these challenges, the safer and more secure your trip will be. Here are some key steps you should take before you travel:
- Check with the Technical Support Center before your travels to help you prepare. You may be issued a new laptop or mobile device that is used specifically for international travel, depending on where you are going. These special devices have additional security measures installed. They also may have been wiped of any sensitive information with the assumption that they will be tampered with or compromised during your travels.
- Ensure all devices you are traveling with have been secured, including having the latest patches and updates installed, a firewall enabled, and current anti-virus installed. Many of the networks you will be connecting to while traveling will have no security, exposing you to far more cyber threats than you normally would be.
- Learn what you can about unique laws or regulations in the country you are visiting. Certain countries have unique restrictions. For example, some countries require laptop hard drives to be imaged before a person can enter a country.
- Be sure that when you are traveling, any online communications are encrypted by using the VPN software on your computer even if it isn't required to connect to a resource. Do this for email, web browsing, etc.
- Ensure that you, your family, and your friends don't post your travel plans on social media sites or public forums.
- Disable geo-location on your mobile devices so that your location is not tracked or published while you travel.
- Keep your laptop and any other devices with you whenever possible. It is very easy to forget or lose them when traveling internationally. Make it a habit to check that you have all of your critical devices with you whenever you are leaving a vehicle or building.
- If you know of any coworkers who have visited the same country or countries you are about to visit, talk to them to learn about any unique cultural or security issues they may have run into.
If you have any questions about your international travels, be sure to check with the Technical Support Center at 970-400-4357 (HELP).