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Don't check your work email on holiday – here's why

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Checking your work email on holiday may be putting corporate security at risk, new research has warned.

A report from Palo Alto Networks has urged anyone taking company smartphones and tablets abroad to beware of unsecured Wi-Fi networks that could be used to hijack unprotected devices.

The company is urging users to make sure their work devices are protected when they're used away from the office, by connecting to a corporate or trusted VPN provider.


Palo Alto's research found that over a third (34%) of UK workers would be likely to use their work device on an open Wi-Fi network when they go on holiday.

Younger workers were more likely to be unable to resist the temptation to check their email, with more than a third (35%) likely to connect a work device onto a password-free network at an airport, bar or restaurant.

“Everyone should be extremely cautious about using unsecured public Wi-Fi networks, whether it’s their personal or a work-issue device,” said Alex Hinchliffe, European threat intelligence analyst, Unit 42, Palo Alto Networks. 

”And while the behavior revealed by our study is worrying as it suggests too many people are all too ready to overlook company policy on acceptable use, it is encouraging that there are steps that businesses can put in place to educate employees properly on cybersecurity best practices.

”If you must have online access, you should use a secure VPN over an open connection or seek out secured Wi-Fi services.”

Mike Moore

Mike Moore is News & Features Editor across both TechRadar Pro and ITProPortal. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers.