Travel abroad with your University laptop

Your University staff laptop is encrypted so that information stored on it cannot be accessed if it is lost or stolen. It also contains special hardware which assists with this encryption.

As well as protecting your information, this also ensures that you are complying with University Information Security policies.

In some countries the use of encryption (or possession of encryption hardware, even if unused) is either controlled or illegal.

It may be necessary to obtain permission (an import licence) to take a University staff laptop (or equivalent, such as a Mac laptop or Microsoft Surface Pro) with you. In other countries you should not take your laptop with you at all.

Is my University staff laptop encrypted?

If you have a standard University staff laptop which has been encrypted, you will be prompted for a PIN (personal identification number) when you first switch it on. These laptops contain hardware which manages this encryption in a convenient and secure way.

If you are using a laptop which does not prompt you for a PIN in this way or are unsure about whether your laptop is encrypted, contact the IT Service Desk who will help you to determine this.

What about USB memory sticks or external hard drives?

USB memory sticks and external hard drives aren’t encrypted by default. However you may have purchased encrypted USB memory sticks or hard drives through IT Services. The same issues which affect encryption and encryption hardware on laptops will apply to those encrypted devices as well.

Need help?

Before you book your travel, you should review the travel pages for information about travelling to specific countries and make sure you are insured.

Alternatively, contact the IT Service Desk if you need further advice.

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