As more and more of our clients are doing business in countries like China and Russia where hacking is a prevalent threat, we are strongly recommending that they take precautions with smart phones and laptops. The hacking of smart phones and laptops has become too commonplace in recent years as new technologies have allowed business travelers to access sensitive information remotely or store information on unsecured devices.
We recommend that our clients leave their smart phones and laptops at home and take loaner laptops and phones or pay-as-you-go phones when they travel. If there is no information stored on the device, then there is nothing for the hacker to steal.
Additionally, we tell our clients to disable the WiFi and Bluetooth options on their phones, as it is through WiFi connections that hackers are most easily able to access smart phones. And as we have mentioned many times, one should also remove the battery from the phone when in meetings, as phones can be turned on remotely and used as listening devices.
Well also suggest that no one access company networks while traveling. One should also be aware that laptops may be infected with keystroke recording software and act accordingly. If accessing a password protected or encrypted site or network is absolutely necessary, copy and paste the password from a USB thumb drive.
Taking these precautions may seem over the top and inconvenient, but it is better this than to lose valuable proprietary information or intellectual property, and they are increasingly becoming standard policy for international companies and government agencies.