Secure Computing

Traveling securely

Tech tips to help make travel safe & secure

Air travel.

With wireless networking on laptops and smartphones, and with public or commercial wireless ("Wi-Fi") network services in most airports and hotels, connecting to your Yale email and resources has never been easier. However, public wireless networks are major targets for identity thieves and other computer criminals. Before you travel, work with your local support provider to be sure your laptop and/or smartphone is set up for secure connections to Yale.

A few basic precautions can assure that you won't become a target for cybercriminals while you travel:

  1. Prior to traveling determine whether your computer contains any 3-lock data. If this data is not necessary for your trip, copy it onto one of Yale's secure centralized file storage services approved for 3-lock data, and then remove the data from your computer.
  2. Third party software should also be updated (i.e. Adobe, Microsoft Office).
  3. ITS strongly recommends using the Yale VPN client when accessing any Yale resource while traveling to securely access a remote network. VPNs may be blocked in certain countries (such as China), so make sure you have other means of connecting. Don’t forget these basics of protection:
  • Use a firewall.
  • Install and update your anti-virus software.
  • Perform a data scan to identify potentially sensitive and vulnerable information stored on your device.
  • Copy your 3-Lock data (and other data deemed unnecessary to bring on your trip) to Yale’s Secure File Storage and delete it off your device for the duration of your trip.
  • Update all software on your device.

To connect to your email via the Web:

Yale websites that provide access to email all use SSL/TLS security and encryption to provide a fairly secure and private connection to your Yale email even if you must use a public computer to access your email (at a conference, for instance), or if you cannot set up a VPN connection to the Internet while you are traveling. Please keep in mind that public computers could still contain software that monitors what you type.

Wi-Fi - Eduroam

Use your Yale NetID and password to connect to WiFi networks at many college and university campuses around the world. Eduroam (educational roaming) is a world-wide roaming access service developed for the international research and education community and allows secure access to the internet using your home university credentials. Learn more...

International Phone Plans

When overseas, using your phone or wifi device without considering the additional charges can be a costly mistake.  For this reason, you may want to consider purchasing an international plan. Learn more...

Traveling outside the United States 
The Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive has assembled a counterintelligence awareness booklet that contains valuable information for those traveling abroad.

Yale Emergency Travel Registry

Before you set off toward your desired destination, take a moment to register your trip on the Yale Emergency Travel Registry, which will contact you and provide assistance if an emergency (for example, a natural disaster or an act of violence) should happen while you are traveling. This service proved highly beneficial after the major earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan in 2011.

FrontierMEDEX provides 24/7 travel assistance coverage for Yale students, faculty, or staff (and accompanying family members) when travelling more than 100 miles from home (both in the U.S. and abroad). FrontierMEDEX can assist with medical emergencies as well as help with recovering lost wallets and travel documents.

Make sure you have the latest information about conditions in the areas you are visiting. Useful resources include Yale’s International Travel Orientations; U.S. State Department for the status of international conflicts; and the World Health Organization for news of disease outbreaks and other health concerns.

Many other travel resources are also available on the Yale and the World website.