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When you travel, you're more vulnerable to hackers

Is your device protected in public?

June 25, 2019

It's easy to let your guard down when you're away from home and do things that put your personal information at risk, like using free public Wi-Fi at the airport, hotel or coffee shop.

If you use public Wi-Fi, you need to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN), said Caleb Barlow, vice president of X-Force Threat Intelligence at IBM Security.

VPN software encrypts anything leaving your laptop, tablet or mobile phone. So, if a crook is sniffing out what's going over that public Wi-Fi, all they get from your device is encrypted data.

"They're easy to install and easy to use," Barlow noted.

Some VPN software is free. The top-rated products cost about $30 a year.

One more tip: Barlow says if you're on vacation, don't bring your business laptop with you, take a spare one that's not loaded with sensitive corporate data.

"And if you need to access your corporate data or email, do it through the cloud," he said.

More Info: How to protect your digital life from hackers and criminals when you travel this summer

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