One of the worst things that can happen in the age of cell-phone addiction that we live in, is being out of town and losing your phone, iPad or laptop. If your luck is like most people’s, it will probably happen about four hours before you are supposed to board the plane to come home. Some common-sense security tips can reduce the sting when (usually not if) it happens to you.

Before you leave, make sure you back your phone up to iCloud, to your computer or whatever method your particular phone supports. Everyone’s phone typically has a passcode today – if yours doesn’t, set one right away. You can usually change the options within your settings to allow a passcode that permits letters and numbers, which is even better. If you travel with your
laptop, it’s a good idea to encrypt the hard drive. This is not a hard process with modern operating systems, and it’s not invasive to you – typically, it just requires you to enter a password immediately when booting the computer.

The most common place that laptops are lost is at the airport – part of the whole “never leave your bags unattended” announcements. Many laptop cases look identical, and it’s very common that person A accidentally grabs person B’s laptop. Other times, it gets put down by the food- court table while you get your drink, and when you come back it’s gone. An ounce of prevention and forethought will ease the pain (and problems!) if this ever happens to you.