Imagine this: you’re traveling outside of your country and…
😮 Your bag is stolen. Your phone was in it and so was your wallet, so here you are in a foreign country without money or a phone.
You’ll have to report the stolen credit cards, but…
😮 What are the credit card numbers? Who do you call?
You make it back to your hotel. You can pay for extra nights at the hotel and can even book a flight home because your credit card is saved in Expedia. You’ll have to go to the embassy and report your lost passport.
You sit down at the computer in the hotel lobby, open Chrome and type in expedia.com, but…
😮 You can’t remember your Expedia password. It’s always saved in your phone and in your laptop back home.
You click on “forgot my password” and go to mail.google.com to retrieve it. You remember your email password somehow 🙏 but…
😮 You have two-factor authentication and you need your phone to get in.
How about calling your sister? She has an extra key to your apartment and she could find the expedia password on your computer. She could even give you the credit card number of an extra one you have in your desk…
😮 But what’s her phone number? You haven’t used the keypad to call her in years. You always just tap her name.
Traveling puts you in a vulnerable position. Maybe you don’t speak the local language. You don’t know anyone, you don’t know who to call or how to get a replacement credit card and, on top of this, you are upset and nervous.
This scenario is to get you to think ahead so you can prevent a bad situation. As cyber-security expert Khürt Williams says in the comments below, “The trick is to plan ONLY for what is LIKELY to happen. Planning for everything that MIGHT happen is impossible.”
👍 Make sure you know your email password.
👍 Know how to get into your email, even if you can’t use the two-factor authentication you set up. For gmail, you can refer to this: https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/185834?hl=en You’ll have to print these backup codes and leave them in your suitcase. Leave a copy with someone at home, too, in case your luggage is lost.
👍 Memorize a loved one’s phone number. Keep a written copy in your luggage.
👍 Give a copy of your credit card numbers, expiration dates and international call collect numbers to the person’s whose phone number you memorized.
👍 Bring a printed copy of your passport.
👍 Know which of your credit cards will wire you cash until your replacement card arrives.
👍 Keep your cards in different locations when you travel. Aixa and I each carry different cards in case one of us loses ours. We also keep one in the hotel safe.
👍 Sign up for text alerts for every purchase. Maybe you still have possession of your card but someone else is using it to make purchases.
👍 Download a copy of 1Password to keep all your digital info safely stored on your phone.
You’ve probably thought of at least some of these things. Look in Khürt Williams comments for great advice on creating strong passwords and follow his wonderful blog: islandinthenet.com