Summer Travel Cyber Security Tips For Government Employees
Vacationing as a government employee brings special security concerns. Follow these precautions to protect your devices and data on the beach and beyond.
Government Data + Maps: 10 Great Examples
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)
Vacation season is in full swing and so are hackers looking for opportunities to pounce when you're relaxed and your guard is down, especially if as a government employee you might possess extra-valuable information.
The cyber risks begin even before you leave for vacation. Don't be one of those people who announces his travel plans on social media. This information is easily accessed by malicious users hoping to break into your home or work systems to gain access to proprietary and confidential information via remote systems while you are away. This is particularly true for government employees whose systems might be dormant or used by others in their absence.
Resisting the urge to share your travel plans via social media is just the first step in mitigating cyber security risks. Here are some additional tips for government employees who are hitting the road for some needed downtime:
When planning a vacation, you should only use websites of known companies. Unfamiliar discount websites can be malicious sites set up to infect you and steal confidential and classified data. Using unknown sites and applications, especially while at work, can hurt the security and performance of governmental systems.
Never click on links or attachments containing coupons or discounts in emails received from a travel companies or other marketers. Phishing emails contain viruses or redirect you to sites in order to get IDs and passwords. Governmental organizations and agencies are favorite phishing targets. Instead, you should go directly to the website to review promotions and offers.
When logging into a website with a user ID and password, make sure it's an "HTTPS" site. Never enter any personal information, especially credit card data, into a website whose URL starts with "HTTP" because it's not as secure. Instead use a payment company or service such as PayPal, Amazon, or Google. Services do not pass your financial information but instead take the payment and transfer money from their systems, protecting your data. Governmental organizations might also provide purchasing cards or purchase orders for authorized travel.
Notify your credit card companies of your travel dates and locations so they can watch for unauthorized activity and alert you of any usage outside of your travel areas. You should also set up multi-form factor authentication on your accounts. This will send separate emails or
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security EnterpriseTo learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
2017 State of IT ReportIn today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.