safe travel and device protection

Top tech tips for safe travel

Overseas travel on the cards? Lucky you! (Can we come?!) Seriously though, if you’re heading overseas, or even just interstate, now is the time to think about the safe travel and security of your devices and data. Now. Not when you have a spare five minutes in the café at the airport. And definitely not when you’re opening your suitcase at the hotel, hoping you packed the right charger.

Getting ready for safe travel

Make savvy device decisions

The more devices you have with you, the greater the possibility that something will get lost, stolen or maliciously accessed. If, for instance, you know you’ll mostly just be checking your emails, opt to do so on your phone and leave your laptop securely at home.

Protect your devices

Device protection comes in many guises, both virtual and physical:

  • Ensure your devices are locked with a pin number or fingerprint ID.
  • Install antivirus and anti-malware protections – or ensure your current protections are fully up to date. The same goes for a VPN. And make sure your operating system is up to date while you’re at it.
  • Before you travel, change all of the passwords you regularly use and, where possible, enable two-factor or multi-factor authentication.
  • Make sure your ‘Find My iPhone’ (Apple) or ‘Find my Device’ (Android) application is toggled on and ready for action – should it be needed!
  • If your tech is particularly precious, consider purchasing an anti-theft bag – there are various options now available that are not only RFID safe, but also have slash-proof materials that guard against cut-and-run thieves. Some even come with built-in power banks to keep you charged on the go.

Check your power

Speaking of power banks – make sure you have one! Read on to find out why, but in the meantime, also ensure you’ve got the cords you need, and consider purchasing a multi-charger for charging various devices at one time.

When you’re on the road

Charge your device securely

Be mindful that USB chargers at airports, hotels and other public places cannot be trusted. Hackers can use these potential ‘juice-jacking’ ports to steal your data when you plug in. This is where your trusty power bank comes in (see above) – to keep you charged until you can access a direct-power (AC) outlet.

Lock your device

Yes – it may seem simple, but make sure to always lock your device when you are not using it. That way if you do accidentally leave it in a café, you won’t come back to discover the barista inverting your colours or toggling your animation settings.

Avoid public wi-fi usage

Logging on via an unsecured network can be an invitation to cyber criminals to access your data. It is best practice to turn off automatic wi-fi and Bluetooth connections so your device will not automatically connect to (or send your data over) unsecured networks. And if you don’t have a choice but to log in publicly, make sure your VPN is up and running and keep your sensitive data as safe as possible.

Scan your device

Regularly scan your devices for viruses or malware while you’re travelling. If something has inadvertently slipped through your security net, the quicker you get onto the issue, the better.

Contact the Geelong technology experts

If you have any questions about ensuring safe travel with your tech, need antivirus advice or support, or just need a better laptop, tablet or phone to take with you – give Geelong Technology Group a call. Our experienced technicians and retail staff are here to help, with advice and support for Geelong and Bellarine Peninsula homes and businesses. 


️ 1300 GET GTG (1300 438 484)


📍 166 Francis St, Belmont

scrolling on phone that has a mobile malware attack

5 ways to protect your phone from mobile malware attacks

We know that you know not to click that email link from the Arabian prince. Or to give your personal details to the bank that you don’t actually bank with. But what about that quick text message link on your mobile phone about a missing package – just when you’re expecting a delivery? Or downloading that app that you haven’t fully read up on? With mobile malware attacks surging, we all need to be more vigilant when it comes to mobile security. But what does that mean on a day-to-day basis?

Phone security to prevent mobile malware attacks

When it comes to the security of our smartphones, avoiding complacency is key. For some reason, we assume that the tiny computer in our pocket is somehow safer from malware than the big computer on our desk. Not true!

Use a VPN when on public wi-fi

With a good data plan, using public wi-fi should not be necessary. Public wi-fi is dangerous. Public wi-fi is a swimming pool full of sharks – avoid splashing around in it! But if you do have to jump in, use a VPN application. VPNs are a barrier between your device and the internet. They route your data through a secure server, keeping your information away from public wi-fi sharks (and pirates!)

Only use trusted sources to download apps

One of the most common methods hackers use to spread malware is via apps and downloads. When it comes to application downloads, third parties or untrusted sources are to be avoided. If you’re on an iPhone, you don’t have much choice – the Apple App Store is your one-stop shop. If you’re an Android user, trusted app stores include Google Play, the Microsoft Store and Amazon Appstore.

Remember: a dangerous app downloaded to your phone can infect it with malware. And once infected, simply removing the app is unlikely to also root out the malware.

Use mobile anti-malware

Yes – antivirus and anti-malware solutions are now available for mobile devices. Install one from a trusted source (see above!) and run it regularly to ensure your device is secure. Also – seriously – look out for malware disguised as virus protection. Cybercriminals are sneaky. And hiding malware in an app that’s supposed to make you more secure is sneaky 101.

Again: ONLY download legitimate apps from trusted sources.

Keep your device updated

Keeping your device updated includes removing old apps you no longer use. When was the app last updated by the developer? Old apps can become security liabilities – if you’re not using it, get rid of it! And speaking of updates, make sure you keep your device’s operating system updated. Sometimes those update requests are easy to ignore, but doing so may leave your device vulnerable to security breaches. Keep on top of updates – and automate them if possible.

Beware of SMS phishing

We’ve written a whole article on the perils and pitfalls of smishing, but essentially this cyberattack is launched via text message. Just as you do on your computer, look at any communication from unknown sources with a very wary eye. If it seems fishy, it’s likely not legitimate. Err on the side of caution and don’t click on links in text messages. And if you think it might be valid, go directly to the source – look up the company’s official business webpage or phone number, making sure to locate the details independently of the text message.

Avoid mobile security threats: contact the Geelong cybersecurity experts

Don’t wait until your phone is infected with malware to secure it. And if you’re a business owner, ensure smartphone security is included in your information security planning.

If you need more information or help with automated solutions to protect your devices and data, give Geelong Technology Group a call. Our experienced IT professionals are here to assist you with mobile phone security. Helping individuals and businesses in Geelong, the Bellarine Peninsula, the Surf Coast, and surrounding regions with their information security is our top priority, so give us a call today on 1300 GET GTG (1300 438 484) or drop into our showroom at 166 Francis Street, Belmont.