With summer travel likely to break all records this year, Check Point Research (CPR) shares its five cyber safety tips for people planning a holiday.
Following the UK government’s quarantine-free travel announcement, holiday bookings to amber list countries this summer have soared.
However, cyber criminals like to take advantage of travelers and so, Check Point Research (CPR) is issuing the following cyber safety tips for people who have upcoming trips planned throughout July, August and September.
Cyber Safety Travel Tips – Avoid public Wi-Fi spots.
Free Wi-Fi access is appealing, but it can also pose some serious security threats. It’s not uncommon for hackers to sit at cafes or airports, waiting for travelers to go onto public Wi-Fi, so that they can prey on the unsuspecting. Avoid unencrypted Wi-Fi networks. It’s ok to ask your hotel about its security protocol before connecting to the Web. Be extra cautious when using Internet cafes and free Wi-Fi hotspots. And, if you must use them, avoid accessing personal accounts or sensitive data while connected to those network.
Cyber Safety Travel Tips – Beware of “shoulder surfing”.
The person sitting next to you on your plane or while you’re waiting for your plane to board could have malicious intentions. Someone can be looking over your shoulder while you enter in credit card details or while you’re logging into social media. It’s smart to get a screen privacy protector, which helps hide your laptop or mobile phone from prying eyes.
Cyber Safety Travel Tips – Double-check the websites you book travel on.
Travel-related cyberattacks can occur even before the trip begins. Ensure the travel web-site you use is credible. Scammers like to imitate authentic sites, and pretend to offer luxury vacations or discounted trips, in order to steal your personal information. If a deal looks or sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Before moving forward, research the company offering the deal extensively. Use a credit card for travel transactions rather than your debit card. Credit card companies often have fraud protections in place should you fall victim to cybercrime; whereas with a debit card, your money is likely gone.
Cyber Safety Travel Tips – Be suspicious of ATMs.
Avoid withdrawing money from just any ATM. Hackers, especially in tourists areas, are known to plug in credit card credential stealers on standalone ATM machines. Use official bank ATMs, preferably ones located within your trusted bank’s lobby.
Cyber Safety Travel Tips – Don’t share your location.
Sharing your location with your friends on social media is fun, but it’s also dangerous from a security perspective. Avoid announcing your vacation dates and location on social media, and in your out-of-office messages. This not only creates an open invitation for all types of criminals to invade your home, but it also provides clues for cyber-criminals to stage cyber attacks.
Ian Porteous, Regional Director, Security Engineering, UK&I at Check Point Software said: “Travel is set to break records this summer. I fully expect cyber criminals to take advantage of many who are looking to finally get out and about after all that quarantining. Everyone should have cyber safety in mind as they travel these next few months. There are some fundamental and basic precautions that people can take to keep themselves safe, such as not sharing their locations, or not using just any ATM they see. I would also avoid using public Wi-Fi spots as much as possible. Don’t be afraid to ask your hotel what security features they have in place for their internet connection. And, I would also use a screen protector on my devices while travelling, as you never know who is looking over your shoulder. Unfortunately, we are now living in a cyber pandemic, so anything can happen.”