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Threat Intelligence

6/6/2019
02:00 PM
Kelly Sheridan
Kelly Sheridan
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Travel Security: Confidence Is Higher Than Deserved

In research released late last month, IBM discovered a disconnect between survey respondents' confidence in their security practices and their actual security habits while on the road. One-quarter say they are "very" or "extremely" confident in their abilities to protect themselves from cybercrime while traveling; 37% say they're "somewhat" confident. Only 16% and 9% say they're "a little" or "not at all" confident, respectively.

But when asked about their travel habits, 24% of these confident respondents admit to connecting to public Wi-Fi networks every time they travel on business; 22% do the same on all personal trips. More than 25% bring and use a device containing confidential or sensitive work-related data when they travel for work; 16% do the same when traveling for pleasure. Nearly 20% of seemingly security-savvy travelers charge devices via public USB ports or charging stations when traveling for business; 17% do the same when they're on vacation.

More than 70% of Americans have engaged in a higher-risk travel behavior connecting to public Wi-Fi, for example, or charging on a public USB station regardless of whether they're traveling for business or pleasure. Charles Henderson, global managing partner at IBM and head of X-Force Red, points to another trend: "Very often, consumers treat work information differently than they treat personal information," he says.

In addition, people are more likely to protect their own data than corporate trade secrets, a common issue faced by CISOs, he says. It is worth noting respondents travel far more frequently for personal than business reasons. Only 26% report traveling for work, while 84% say they primarily travel for personal reasons.

(Image: Georgejmclittle stock.adobe.com)

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