Give me a break! In the next month, students will get the week off for spring break—a much needed reward after months of hard work and, for some, gnarly winter weather. Spring break means free time, family vacations, trips with friends, and timeless memories.
But, spring break can pose some risks to your online reputation and your identity. So whether you are going to party it up in the Caribbean or you are taking the kids to Disney World, here are some tips to keep you digitally safe this spring break.
- Don’t bring more technology than you have to. Do you really need to bring your laptop, tablet, and smartphone on your beach vacation? The more devices you bring, the more chances for someone to steal or compromise your device and your personal data.
- Backup your data. No matter what devices you decide to bring, make sure you back them up before you leave. You don’t know what will happen on your trip, don’t risk your data.
- Share when you get home. It’s tempting to share that family picture with Mickey, but it could alert thieves that you aren’t home. Wait until you return home before you share your vacation pictures online.
- Review your privacy settings. Just because you aren’t sharing anything from your spring break on social media, doesn’t mean that your friends aren’t. Check up on your privacy settings so you can manage who sees your content, and as best as possible, what others say about you. That embarrassing video of your belly flop doesn’t need to be seen by everyone.
- Be careful when using public Wi-Fi. Don’t log on to bank/credit card sites or shop online when using a public Internet connection. You don’t know who else is on your network.
- Install security software on all your devices. Use comprehensive security software like McAfee LiveSafe™ service to protect your devices no matter where you are.
Have a great spring break!
Robert Siciliano is an Online Safety Expert to Intel Security. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Mobile was Hacked! Disclosures.