Guard your privacy when offline or traveling

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Protect your personal information

  • Delete your browsing history:  Simply use the browser tools available to delete your cookies and  history when you are finished using a public computer. This will help to maintain your privacy and keep your information more secure.
  • Log out: Anyone can access public computers. Close all browser tabs and log out of your accounts (some computers do this automatically but it is good to confirm). You wouldn’t want just anyone to have access to your personal information and accounts.
  • Remember me NOT: Make sure the “remember me” function is not enabled on a public computer.

Practice security for privacy

  • Look for the “s”: Make sure sites are security enabled. Look for web addresses with “https://” or “shttp://”, which means the site takes extra measures to help secure your information. “Http://” is not secure.
  • Get savvy about Wi-Fi hotspots: To protect your privacy, do not conduct personal transactions on Wi-Fi hotspots or public computers that request sensitive information such as bank account information, home address or your social security number. Wait to conduct these transactions on a private home computer.


Planning a spring break vacation? People are frequently more vulnerable when traveling because a break from their regular routine or encounters with unfamiliar situations often result in less cautious behavior. If this sounds like you, or someone you know, these five tips will help you protect yourself and guard your privacy.

  • Track that device! Install a device finder or manager on your mobile device in case it's lost or stolen. Make sure it has remote wipe capabilities and also protects against malware.
  • Avoid social media announcements about your travel plans. It's tempting to share your upcoming vacation plans with family and friends, but consider how this might make you an easy target for local or online thieves. While traveling, avoid using social media to "check in" to airports and consider posting those beautiful photos after you return home.
  • Traveling soon? If you're traveling with a laptop or mobile device, remove or encrypt confidential information. Consider using a laptop or device designated for travel with no personal information, especially when traveling out of the country.
  • Limit personal information stored on devices. Use a tool like Identity Finder to locate your personally identifiable information (e.g., SSN, credit card numbers, or bank accounts) on your computer, then secure or remove that information.
  • Physically protect yourself and your devices. Use a laptop lock, avoid carrying identification cards, shred sensitive paperwork before you recycle it, and watch out for "shoulder surfers" at the ATM.