It’s every Digital Nomads worst nightmare. Travelling in a far off land, and having their laptop stolen. Every nomad needs to consider this before setting out on their adventure, and to assist with that the friendly digital experts at SecretNomads.com have put together the guide to ensuring your link to the world, and often your income, are safe when travelling abroad.
The Cloud can be saviour in the event your laptop is lost or stolen. Services like Google Drive allow you to store all your business documents in the cloud, allowing you to access them from any device (in this case, your replacement laptop). By storing your spreadsheets and text documents in Google Drive you can pick up any computer, or visit any internet cafe, and ensure your business isn’t affected.
For other types of files, services like Dropbox will be perfect for storing photos of your travels and other documents that are not required daily.
One consideration before all regualarly accessed business documents are moved to the cloud is the scenario which all to many digital nomads are familiar with; being in a situation where finding stable WIFI in near impossible. In same places in the world, a reliable WiFi connection is hard to find, and without access to WiFi, you have no access to the cloud, and your business grinds to a quick halt. If you know you are travelling to an area without stable WiFi, it is a good idea to download the key files you will be needing for this part of the journey, put them on an encrypted flashdrive, and keeping it close (for example, on a lanyard around your neck). I don’t recommend ever packing your flash drive with other easily stolen items, such as your day pack or wallet. Keep it hidden and tucked away.
Tips specific for MAC Users
If you are using an Apple device, there are a few built in features that are perfect for digital nomads concerned about security while travelling. Find My Mac will help you pin point where you laptop is if it is either lost or stolen. The iCloud backup service will keep your documents backed up frequently, and the Time Machine tool is worth enabling too. We recommend all Apple Digital Nomads ensure all these three features are enabled before leaving on their travels.
Resources I recommend are Prey and CrashPlan. Prey protects your devices from theft and is available accross laptopns, phones and tablets running Windows, Android, or iOS. Prey is an open source project that literally has hundreds of document recoveries all around the world. The plans start at just USD$5 per month and this protects up to 3 devices – which should be plenty for most digital nomads.
Whats tools do you use to keep your laptop and digital files safe abroad? If you have any tips please leave a comment below for other nomads!