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Tips for Traveling Safely with Your Laptop

Take these necessary precautions to keep your computer safe and secure at all times, no matter where your travels may take you.

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, your laptop will likely accompany you. Although traveling with your computer provides a portable workspace or a source of entertainment or communication, it also presents a new set of security concerns and threats. Check out these tips to ensure that you do everything you can to protect your laptop while away from home.

Protect It Physically

You paid a lot for your laptop, so it’s only logical to pay a little more to ensure that it’s protected from preventable damage. From chaotic airports to crowded attractions, the hustle and bustle of traveling makes physical protection for your computer more important than ever. Shelter your computer with three protective layers: a plastic shell, a cushioning sleeve, and a closed backpack or bag. To avoid unnecessary heat damage, double-check that your laptop is turned completely off — that doesn’t mean in “sleep” mode! — before placing it in a closed sleeve or bag.

Protect It When It’s out of Sight

Even if you’re traveling for business, you likely won’t need to have your computer by your side 24/7. If you leave it in a hotel room, consider taking advantage of the “do not disturb” door hanger. You’ll miss out on freshly made beds and clean towels, but it means fewer people going in and out of your room, significantly lowering the chances of having your laptop stolen. If maid service is too important to forgo, keep your computer out of sight and locked up with a cable lock or in a room safe.

Prepare in Case It’s Lost or Stolen

The only thing worse than losing your computer is losing all the information, files and pictures stored on it. Backup everything on your laptop before you leave for your trip. Use an online storage service, such as Google Drive or SkyDrive, or transfer your files to physical hard drives. It’s also a good idea to write down any passwords or sensitive information and store it in a safe spot. Keeping this information in a document on your computer won’t help you if your computer goes missing! Lastly, make sure to record the specifications of your laptop — such as the make, model and serial/service number — so you can report it if it goes missing.

Beware of Public Internet

If you plan to take advantage of free Wi-Fi in hotels, coffee shops, libraries, or any other public place, do so with extreme caution. Unsecured public Wi-Fi networks are breeding grounds for viruses, malware, and data breaches. Consider using a virtual private network, or VPN, to surf the web safely. If you’re traveling for business, your company may have one that you can use. Otherwise, you can easily buy one from various providers. Also be sure that your laptop is protected with up-to-date antivirus and antitheft software. Fortunately, PSafe Total Windows makes it easy to protect your Windows laptop with unbeatable protection and enhancements