The World Cup: Winning Cybersecurity Tips
June 14, 2018 by Bill Rosenthal

FIFA world cup trophy

The World Cup is a great example of an event that inspires awe, national pride, and excitement in people from countries all over the world. While these events are typically focused on physical security, the need for increased cybersecurity efforts should not be overlooked.

If you have traveled to Russia to experience the World Cup in person or are out traveling the world for any other reason, you must not forget that there are cybercriminals who are looking to turn travelers like you into victims. What can you do to reduce the risk of having your personal information, money, and data stolen? Here are four of the best cybersecurity practices for staying safe while enjoying yourself at the World Cup or while you are on any kind of trip.

  1. Beware of public Wi-Fi. – It is always a good idea to assume that someone is monitoring your data when you are using public Wi-Fi. With this is in mind, remember to not access your sensitive data (such as financial information) while connected to these networks. Beware of entering any login credentials that would allow access into private information as well. When connecting to any network in public, check with the establishment staff about the correct Wi-Fi network name to avoid false networks created by cybercriminals. If possible, it is best to use the personal hotspot function on your smartphone instead of using a public network. Should the public Wi-Fi not have a VPN, do not use it at all for any matter and opt for your cell phone network instead. 
  2. Back your data up to ensure that you don’t lose it. – Vacations and traveling are all about relaxing from the stresses of everyday life. However, this does not mean that you can be lax when it comes to cybersecurity. It is common for things to get lost or misplaced while traveling, but this can be a major security risk when those items are a company laptop or tablet. Be sure to backup, update, and encrypt your data before you attend the World Cup or any kind of vacation to prevent it from falling into the hands of criminals.
  3. Be on the lookout for credit card skimmers. – The need to use an ATM during a vacation is not an uncommon occurrence, but it can be an incredibly dangerous one if you are not vigilant about security. Cybercriminals will undoubtedly have installed credit card skimmers at ATMs around the area where the event is taking place and at popular tourist attractions. Skimmers are small devices that are able to steal credit card numbers and PIN codes through physical access via the card slot. Skimmers are common occurrences all over the world, not specifically at major events. If you must use an ATM, remember to use one inside of a building rather than outside (it is less likely to have been tampered with for fear of exposure). Also, check the card slot and pin pad for any signs of tampering or foul play.
  4. Think before you click. – Before clicking on any foreign links, stop and think for a moment. Check to make sure that the URL features an HTTPS and is from a trustworthy, legitimate source. Always be cautious before clicking on things and the messages that occur with hyperlinks. If the message or results of clicking were anything other than what was expected, it could be malicious.

With constant vigilance and the employing of cybersecurity best practices, you can feel protected knowing that your data will stay safe while you are rooting for your country in the World Cup or traveling to any kind of new destination.