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 newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags laptop securitylaptop bags

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

Brand Post

More online threats demand more protection.

Save up to $90! Great Deals on Norton 360 antivirus starting at just A$79.99 Get comprehensive protection with Norton 360 including Antivirus, secure VPN, a Password Manager, PC Cloud Backup, and more. All backed by 60-day Money Back Guarantee and 100% Virus Protection Promise.

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?