Holiday Travel: 10 Ways to Keep Your Laptop, Privacy Safe

Holiday travelers, hang onto your laptops: One is now stolen every 53 seconds. Here are 10 tips to keep your PC and data safe as we enter the busiest travel season of the year.

If you're planning on traveling with your laptop this holiday season, you might want to travel prepared. The statistics are overwhelmingly bad: According to Gartner, one laptop is stolen every 53 seconds.

US airports, in particular, have become black holes for business travelers' laptops: 12,000 laptops are lost at US airports every week, and 70 percent of those laptops, which good Samaritans and airport employees return to lost-and-found departments, are never reclaimed, reported the Ponemon Institute.

Increased security measures have created longer checkpoint lines and a more stressful environment. More than 70 percent of business travelers feel rushed when trying to get on their flights, noted the Ponemon research, and 60 percent worry that delays due to security checkpoints will cause them to miss their flight. It's not surprising, then, that according to US airport representatives, the most common airport locations where laptops are lost or missing include security checkpoints (40 percent) and departure gates (23 percent), the Ponemon report found. (See "8 Laptop Bags That Will Help You Speed Through Airport Security" to help make your travels more efficient.)

Add a couple of screaming kids and millions of others trying to "get home for the holidays," and you've got a recipe for laptop loss. "The stress of rushing to catch a flight," notes the Ponemon report, "combined with the number of items business travelers typically carry (such as laptops, cell phones, PDAs, briefcases and luggage) creates a situation that is conducive to property loss."

10 Tips to Avoid Laptop and Data Loss

To help ensure a safer and less hectic holiday season, Absolute Software, an asset- and data-protection and recovery vendor, offers these 10 tips:

1. Back Up Valuable Data Before Traveling. Travelers should back up their data as often as possible to minimize the risk of data loss in the event that their laptop is stolen, the Absolute Software report urges. "Use an encrypted thumb drive to back up sensitive or valuable files and keep it separate from your laptop," notes the report. "Because the information stored on the laptop is often more valuable than the laptop itself, it is important to treat the data with as much care as possible."

2. Use Laptop Recovery and Data Protection Software. "Laptop recovery tools are highly effective in the event thieves do make off with your gear," according to the report. In addition, the security vendors' software solutions, such as Absolute Software's Computrace LoJack for Laptops, can help track down the laptop.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags laptop bagslaptop security

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?