Travellers Beware of Vacation Hacking

A new trend in internet fraud, known as "vacation hacking," has been victimizing tourist all over the globe. Cybercriminals are targeting travelers by creating fake Wi-Fi hot spots in hotels, airports, and sometimes on the plane itself.
Vacationers are lead to believe they're signing on at designated Wi-Fi access points, when they are in fact  signing on to fraudulent networks, effectively hand-delivering personal information to hackers. As the amount of people travelling with smartphones and laptops, airports and hotels are responding, offering an increasing amount of free internet access. Unfortunately, trying to lure in more business has been luring in crooks as well.

The people at Symantec have devised these tips to hep keep your vacation safer:

— Pay attention to your surroundings. Just because you're on vacation doesn't mean you're not in public. Don't look at important documents when sitting in a waiting area for a plane or a train — wait until you're alone and in private for that.

— Beware of "Evil Twins." Some Wi-Fi networks look legitimate but are actually dummy networks created by criminals. Even if they contain the name of your airport, airline or hotel, they will directly link your computer to the hacker's. If you always use the official access keys provided by the establishment, then you should be safe.

— Always assume Wi-Fi connections are being eavesdropped on. Never enter sensitive data — Social Security numbers, bank account information, etc. — when browsing the Web via a Wi-Fi network.

— Set all Bluetooth devices to "hidden," not to "discoverable." Better yet, if you don't use Bluetooth, just shut off the function altogether.

— Keep your security software current and active. Mobile PCs are just as vulnerable to viruses, worms and Trojan horses as are desktops, so make sure you have the latest protection installed. Courtesy of

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