As you travel for vacation or Jan Term, we offer the following suggestions to help you have a safe and trouble-free trip while carrying electronic devices:
- Do I really need this? Consider deleting from the devices you plan to carry any information that may be personal or sensitive for you. This could include photos as well as documents, text messages, emails, etc. Ask yourself – how would I feel if someone else got a hold of this [document, photo, text, email message, etc.] and made it public?
- Where should I put this? If you do need access to personal or sensitive information while you are traveling, consider putting it on a OneDrive storage location [if using a personal device] or your network drive accessing it through our VPN software [if using a College device], rather than keeping it on your device. If you do keep it on your device, be sure to have a backup somewhere safe.
- Can someone else get to this? We recommend that each electronic device you carry off campus (laptop, tablet, smartphone) require a password in order to safeguard your information if the device is stolen or lost.
- Are my devices safe? Obviously you want to be careful to maintain good control of your devices as you travel and keep them out of public view as much as you can. But also remember that extreme heat and cold can damage or impact the performance of some laptops and tablets. If you are going to a northern location in January, for example, try not to leave a device in an unheated car overnight.
- Can I get juice? Find out ahead of time what sort of electric power you will have in a non-U.S. location and have the right power converters or chargers available.
- Is anyone snooping? Try to limit your use of wireless services to those which encrypt traffic between your device and their website, signified by having https:// at the beginning of the URL and showing a lock icon near the URL (location depending on the web browser). If the one available to you does not have these, you may wish to postpone activities requiring entering credit card or other valuable information. Regardless of the service you are using, pay attention to any warnings you may receive from your browser while on wireless.
- If the worst happens? Finally, if your College-provided device is lost or stolen or if you believe you have been hacked while accessing the College network on any device, call the Help Desk immediately if it is during normal business hours (903.813.2063) or Campus Police outside of normal business hours (903.813.2555). There may be steps we can quickly take to minimize your disruption and loss if you contact us sooner rather than later.
- Also, review these Travel Tips!
Stay safe and enjoy your travels!