As I have been traveling to Europe lately and have a friend asking for advice as she goes to Koala Lampur, I thought I’d put together a few tips on security and phone use when you leave the U.S.
- Don’t use Internet Explorer – use Google Chrome.
- Keep your electronics with you – don’t put them in your checked luggage.
- Make sure you use HTTPS when getting your email. Gmail does this automatically and for that reason alone, I’d have a gmail account.
- Setup a new gmail account just for this trip and have your other mail forwarded to this account.
- Don’t use any banking or sites which require one of your passwords. Wait until you get back home to use Bank of America or Amazon etc.
- If possible have a travel phone or laptop which is used only for that purpose and doesn’t have all your personal information. You can buy a nice 7″ tablet for around $150.
- Make sure you have the correct electrical adapters for current in the new country.
- Password protect all devices.
- Don’t be posting on Facebook and Twitter about your trip – thieves love to learn your home is empty.
- Use only wifi which has a Password . What they had in Europe was a unique user name and password for each device – very nice!
- Don’t use public computers. They are more than likely compromised and have malware.
- Since Smart Phones are ubiquitous for most Americans, they are nice to have when out of the country. The problem is that if you use it as a phone, you will be paying hefty charges for phone usage. The trick is to turn off your phone function, but allow it to use the wifi to send and receive email and surf the net. Each phone may be slightly different, so check with your carrier.
- You could also buy a SIM card for the area of the country into which you are going. I went to England a couple years ago and got a SIM card with minutes for that trip.
- You could also buy a used phone without a SIM card and just use it for your email etc.
- Set up a Skype account to make phone calls. The price is very reasonable.