Loss of physical property is not the only concern when a phone, laptop, or netbook goes missing while traveling. More than the cost of the equipment itself, there is the potential exposure of personal data contained in them that could represent undetermined costs to its owners. Costs will not be limited to the financial aspect but will include concerns regarding business/trade secrets, security of self and family members, and exposure of other sensitive data that can affect reputation and well-being.
When it is absolutely necessary to bring equipments or files along in travel, travelers will have to anticipate possible scenarios that may occur unexpectedly. Things do not always go as planned in spite of best precautionary measures taken. Travelers will have to try to minimize the potential damage by the performance of certain actions such as scrubbing laptops of important files or at the very least encrypting these files when it is necessary to bring them, and opting to bring the less expensive laptop which could also perform the required functions in travel. They can opt to bring the next best alternative which when lost is easier accepted.
Securing data requires travelers to remove all those data that are deemed NOT for public consumption from laptops and other mobile devices. Personal information in the hands of unscrupulous people is like a time bomb waiting to explode on the faces of its owners. Bank and credit card details should not be conveniently found in the stolen item since this could equate to a major financial debacle. The scenario becomes even scarier when victimized in a foreign country where travelers have no family or friends to turn to.
Online activity should always be done discreetly. Travelers should not call attention to themselves when using expensive laptops and other like equipments. It is always best practice not to check the laptop along with other luggage and have it close while on the plane to avoid the possibility of forgetting about it and leaving it behind.