Video: Safe Computing When Traveling

Planning a big trip or a small excursion? If you'll be taking your laptop, phone, or other mobile device along, protect your privacy, personal data, and the U-M data you work with, while you travel. 

Before You Travel

Only take what you need:

  • Avoid risk by not taking personal or U-M data you won't need. Take only the devices, files, and applications you need to use while traveling. 
  • Check with your department's IT staff to see if you can borrow a loaner laptop or other devices.

Set basic security settings:

  • Use a passcode and auto-lock.
  • Turn on the find-my-phone feature.
  • Install the U-M VPN (Virtual Private Network).
  • Keep anti-virus software up-to-date on laptops.

While You Are Traveling

  • Know that government officials in some countries inspect electronic devices and may download material from them. Protect yourself—and the university—by not taking sensitive or private information on your trip.
  • Keep your electronic devices close at hand and in view when you travel.
  • Cellular networks are most secure. If you use untrusted wireless networks, such as those in hotels, turn on the U-M VPN for your device to protect your connection. Turn off wireless, GPS, and Bluetooth when not in use. That also improves battery life.
  • Some countries restrict Internet access, so some things might not work the way you expect. You can get the U-M experience you expect by using U-M's Virtual Sites service, which lets you use Campus Computing Sites computers remotely.

When You Get Back Home

Change your UMICH password. That will block anyone who might have gained access to your U-M accounts.

Enjoy your trip, and keep your devices and data safe. It's good for you and the U.