During the winter, many business owners and higher-ups travel for a variety of reasons. Whether to make future-facing deals, take a breather on a warm beach, or for a combination of both, your data is still at risk when you travel – more so when in another country. Many business operators feel that it is more difficult to remain protected while abroad, and depending on where you go, that is correct. However, there are a few key ways you can protect your confidential business when you travel. Here are our suggestions.
Back Up Sensitive Data Before Leaving
Regardless of whether your business automatically backs up server files or if you keep all of your sensitive data on one convenient mobile device such as a laptop, it is crucial to back up everything before you depart for your trip. Be sure to either upload to the server or store your data in an offline external hard drive in the event that any devices you have with you while away are compromised.
Update Anti-Viral Software
Every day, new malicious threats are created that could potentially impact the protection of your business’ data and other digital assets. By simply ensuring that your antiviral software is up-to-date, scans are scheduled more frequently, and that your employees are instructed to keep a close eye on data collected from analysis, your business is at a lessened risk.
Enable Your Firewall
Every business should already have a strong firewall system enabled as it is, but when someone from the company travels, it exposes servers and even systems located at the main office to foreign digital threats. If your firewall is currently deactivated or at a lower setting, be sure to activate and upgrade its defenses accordingly – it’s a step that is easy to take and highly effective at blocking viral threats and bots from infiltrating your business.
Strengthen Your Passwords
It goes without saying that password strength can dictate the security of not only your own on-hand devices, but also any networks or devices that they are digitally linked to. Everything from cloud storage to servers and even workstation computers can be at risk of data theft, and by travelling with a low-strength password is akin to leaving a door with a deadbolt locked only with a weak chain. Update your passwords before leaving to maximize protection, and be sure to come up with unique combinations that aren’t used on other devices or for other services. This can feel difficult to achieve, but the result is that your devices are safeguarded so threats and data thieves can’t penetrate your first lines of defense.
Be Careful About Where You Connect
It might be tempting to simply connect to any Wi-Fi connection that you can find while abroad. However, doing so blindly without considering your level of online protection and visibility can put your privacy at great risk. To combat this, sign up for and use a VPN (virtual private network). Alternatively, you can also create your own hotspot to then make a secure connection. If you do need to connect to a public Wi-Fi network, however, be sure to only connect to an encrypted one and verify the name of it before connecting. Additionally, consider adjusting the settings on any password manager tools such as LastPass to restrict authorization in specific countries or enable two-factor authentication. Some of these tools also enable for you to keep your activity hidden with a secret email address, among other proactive security features.
Use Only Credit Cards When Travelling
Business and debit cards can cause financial headaches when travelling, including a lack of coverage if used fraudulently and higher liability limits. Additionally, you’ll be able to more efficiently track and manage expenses, making it easier to identify the validity of each transaction you make while abroad.
There are many other ways to protect your data when travelling, including reaching out to a reputable professional IT service provider. Contact us at Revolution Networks today to learn how we can safeguard your data and day-to-day business operations no matter where you are.