China is known for being a unique internet environment, where users run the risk of piracy, malware, online attacks and censorship. Not to mention, the censorship may block websites and platforms travelers are used to having access to, such as Facebook, Google or Twitter. Below you have tips and information on how to ensure that devices and personal information is safe while you use your technology in China.
If possible, don’t take any devices or files with you that you don’t need. Download all files or information you don’t need onto an external hard drive you leave at home. This way, if anything does get hacked, some or most of your personal information will be spared.
Make sure all software and security updates are installed before you enter the country. Never update your software while in China in case it is a virus or malware being downloaded.
When not in use, turn off the device(s) - as opposed to letting them sit idle in sleep or hibernation mode.
Be sure to password protect the device.The password/passcode should be long and complex and try not to repeat passwords.
Tape over any integrated laptop cameras
Set up a VPN before you get there. A VPN will allow you to access most of the “Western Internet”, but you want to make sure you do your homework to find one that will get you around the Great Firewall (this changes over time, but is information easily accessed with some googling before your trip).
If you take the proper precautions and you are prepared, you shouldn’t have too many issues while using your technology in China.