Secure IT Foundation

Personal Security #1 – use encryption

Posted on: September 15, 2009

Not strictly a computer problem, but personal security should be considered as part of your overall home security plan. This includes your behaviour when on holiday or travelling for business. The joy of living in Amsterdam is you get to see the best and worst of people in one small space, especially when tourists believe that they are totally safe at 3am as the pickpocket gang scopes them up.

The best thing about tourists is you know where all their important belongings will be… in the hotel, so key cards are the new gold. A sensible traveller never travels with anything really important to them, but typically some travellers only have one laptop, brought from home, with all their personal and financial information stored on it.

If you must travel with a laptop and do store information on it that is critical to your life, then before you leave – backup the laptop and ensure you have full hard drive encryption working. Store it in the hotel safe when not being used, and hopefully nothing will happen to it, but if it does, at least you can be sure that your information is still secure. Don’t forget that your USB thumb drive / flash memory stick / floppy disk also need protecting with encryption as it is easier to lose than a laptop!

So on your travels, what you don’t have with you, can’t be lost. What you do have with you can be protected. Not sure what to use, we suggest TrueCrypt but there are commercial alternatives that do a similar job, if you want to pay for it.

SB

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