Sunscreen isn’t the Only Safety Tip to Survive Vacation This Summer

Cyber Security, High Technology, Public Relations, Technology Posted Jun 22, 2018 by Gabrielle Kondracki

As June 21 marked the always anticipated (and official) arrival of summer, Alice Cooper said it best—school’s out for summer. That means vacations are soon to follow. Whether taking your hiatus at a beach resort, or trekking up north for some mountain and lakefront views, fun in the sun happens wherever you travel.

Tips to stay safe in the summer heat bring us back to what our parents have told us since we were kids: wear sunscreen, stay hydrated, and always maintain the buddy system.

While these tips seem like second nature, we forget that we now live in a digital world, which means new elements to consider when it comes to travel protection. Our advice? Follow these security travel tips to help eliminate potential hacks.

  1. Beware of Free WiFi: Sure, free always sounds good, but nothing ever comes without cost—WiFi included! Accepting WiFi that does not require passwords makes your device vulnerable to hacker interception as well as the possibility of fake accounts set by cybercriminals. Always use protected, password-locked WiFi.


  1. Update your Devices: Are your apps like Facebook and Snapchat stuck in old versions due to fear of layout changes? What if we told you that stubbornness over change could cost you your data!? Apps and phone software updates are often the result of security flaws found within them that require patching—and those apps with personal data become more easily available to cybercriminals if you’re not updating your apps and the devices they run on.


  1. Disable Auto-Connect and Location Sharing: Phones have a sneaky way of getting us to grant access to things like auto-connect and location sharing without paying much attention to it. Head into your settings and make sure you disable these features before you hit the road for a vacation. Leaving your location sharing on allows cybercriminals to know where you are, and when they’ll have the best opportunity for a physical intrusion or worse. Leaving auto-connect on makes it easy for a cybercriminal to intercept your connection and collect data stored on your phone. Always connect manually when accessing the internet!


  1. Payment Apps are your Friends: ATM-jacking is on the rise, and when traveling, the last thing you want is stolen credit information or fraudulent activity shutting down your cards. Take advantage of those nifty (and secure) apps on your phone, like Venmo and ApplePay. This way, ATMs stay out of the picture and you remain free of hacks!


  1. Live (Temporarily) Off the Grid: Enjoy the fresh air, crashing waves, and scenery. There’s no better way to remain safe than shutting down those devices and living in the moment—even if it’s just for a few hours at a time!

With this simple checklist, you can minimize the risk of a cybercriminal disrupting your summer vacation—because no one likes a party crasher! For more tips and tricks, head over to Consumer Reports What You Need to Know About Cyber Safety While Traveling, and get advice from Director of Corporate Security for Duo Security, Josh Yavor. After all, there’s surely a reason Duo is the most loved company in security!