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June 27, 2024

Keeping You and Your Business Safe Traveling as a Digital Nomad

Have you given enough consideration to how to maintain business security while traveling the world as a digital nomad?

Whether you’re a seasoned digital nomad or just starting, traveling full-time or part-time, ensuring the safety of your business and family on the road is a top priority. This episode covers 14 actionable tips to protect yourself and your assets.

By listening to this episode, you will:
1. Learn practical steps to secure your banking and financial transactions while abroad.
2. Discover essential tools and services that can safeguard your business operations remotely.

3. Gain insights into maintaining personal and family safety with travel security measures.

Links mentioned in this episode:
Focus WP Vacation Service – Use Coupon Code “noworrynomad” to save $150
Listen now to Episode 23 and equip yourself with these crucial travel security strategies. Listen and ensure peace of mind on your entrepreneurial journey.


Full Transcript

So traveling as a business owner can definitely increase your need for additional security. So let’s talk about it in this episode of the Digital Nomad Entrepreneur podcast. I’ve got several ideas that I want to share with you that I’ve used to increase my safety, my family’s safety, and the safety of my business. My name is Eric. I’m a full time digital nomad entrepreneur, traveling around the world with my wife and our four kids. And as a dad and a business owner, I take security pretty seriously. And not saying that, you know, if you’re not a dad, you wouldn’t take it seriously. But it’s just one of those things that definitely is on my radar a good bit. So in this episode I actually have an overwhelming number. I 14 I should have broken this up in the two episodes, but I’ve got 14 ideas I’m going to give you and I’m not going to labor. A lot of these, you know, they’re, you know, some of them don’t take a lot of time, but I’m going to So some of them I’ll just mention and then move on. But I’ve got 14 things for you to do to work on keeping your business safe. And even if you’re not traveling, maybe some things you want to consider. But this is, after all, a podcast designed to help business owners optimize their business for revenue, profit and location independence. I really appreciate all of you that listen that aren’t full time travelers. Those of you that have reached out and have become coaching clients or have joined in on our month, our Monday open office, our calls that aren’t full time travelers, you know, that is that is great to have you here. But I’m really am willing to help people set their business up for success no matter where they choose to run their business from. And if I can inspire you to travel a little more, well, I really want to be able to do that By the way, it’s been a while since I’ve mentioned it. If you are a family and travel is your thing, make sure you check out my wife’s podcast. And her podcast is the Digital Nomad Family Podcast. That’s right. We’ve got the Digital Nomad Family Podcast and this the Digital Nomad Entrepreneur podcast. All right. So let’s jump in to these 14 items. We’re already 2 minutes and 35 seconds into this episode, so let’s get going. Number one, talk to your bank before you leave. This is going to be really important. Just a couple weeks ago, I got a an email from my bank that they were going to be shutting down one of our accounts. We have a a line of credit with our bank that is useful to cover, you know, periods where we may be, you know, waiting for a big invoice to come in or something like that, you know, just to help with some, you know, when there are some peaks and, you know, maybe some cash flow, it’s nice to have that line of credit as a as a backup. But as it turns out, every two years, they require a new signature. They require an updated signature. They require you to visit the Bret the bank. You’ve got to go into the bank. Well, I’m in Costa Rica. I’m not going to run back up to the United States to do this. But luckily, I had gone in, sat down with our business banker before we left, explaining what we were doing, and we were able to put in several mechanisms that we can use when we’re out of the country to continue doing our banking. I have a couple of additional people that can sign these documents for me on my behalf. I’ve got other things in place, but specifically, just being able to drop an email to Andy, that’s our business banker. We’re with Truist Bank. Absolutely an amazing business bank. And I’m able just to reach out to him and work with him and he knows our lifestyle and understands it. So, you know, what is this? Why is this in a security kind of thing? Because as you’re traveling, you need your bank to understand that you’re they’re going to see transactions happening in different countries and different things, not from a client base, but maybe to me or I might use my card like, you know, I’ve got business expenses as I’m traveling. If I go work in a a coffee shop, well, that’s not a personal expense. That’s a business expense. And so for lots of reasons. Talk to your bank before you do any traveling. Number two, you want to set up an. Sex with someone to your most important business things. You need to have a backup plan. Now, if you are listening to this and I get a lot of people that listen to this that are Web designers, not all of you are interested in that. There’s a lots of types of jobs you can have to be a digital nomad entrepreneur. But for those of you that are web designers, I want to highlight one option or shout out one option for you. And then for those that aren’t Web designers, look and see if there’s something like this for you. But if you’re a web designer, I want to recommend that you check out Focus WP at Focus WP dot C oh, focus WP dot C oh. And they have this vacation service that actually works as an emergency backup. And what you do is you onboard all of your clients websites with them, and then when you need them to, they can immediately begin taking care of those sites for when you go on vacation at a very reasonable price. It’s absolutely fantastic. And I reached out to my friend Stephanie there and I told I was going to do this. And she’s put together a coupon code, if you will, that if you go to focus WP Dot CEO, check out their vacation service and use the code. No worry, Nomad. One word, no worry. Nomad, you’re going to save $150 right off the top. Now, this is for a limited time. So whenever you’re listening to this, check it out right away. See if the windows still open on that. It’s definitely a worth a service because if you run into a big travel delay and some countries were in like, you know, if there’s a if there’s a power outage or there’s a, you know, Internet outage or something like that, like it may take longer to get that stuff repaired than your used to. Or if your, you know, laptop get stolen or something like that, you’re you may be in areas where there’s not a convenient place just to get something replaced. So you’ve got to have a backup plan for your to serve your client. If you’re not a center, this may be somebody in the same industry as you are a friend, a colleague, somebody that you can trust, that you can say, Hey, can I keep you signed up with access to be able to get in to things and step in if, if, if I need to work something out as a backup plan for you, this is important. Number three, travel with security cameras and smoke detectors. Now we travel very light as a family. In fact, we are a carry on luggage only family. Up to this point. We travel with carry on luggage and one personal item for each person. We’re a family of six and we’ve lived that way for a couple of years. Everything we own and everybody needs fits into their carry on and personal bag. My it for me. I’ve got a carry on where my clothes goes into as well as my my tripod that I use for a couple of other things. I use it for work, but I also use it for my hobby. I travel with the stuff that I need to be able to go out and paint. I like to paint in plain air and so I travel with my hobby and I also have my entire portable office to run my company. World HQ of In-transit Studios goes in my personal backpack and that’s what we travel with. We have made sure, though, that we have room for two ring security cameras and we travel with smoke detectors because there’s a lot of places out there that don’t have smoke detectors. And we can set up security cameras for when we are gone. And we just have that as a as a backup. And as parents, there have been times where, you know, not as much anymore that our kids are older. But when our kids were a little younger, still old enough to be left alone, but, you know, we would leave the cameras on and my wife and I would go out to dinner and we could, you know, remotely access the camera and say hi to the kids just to remind them that somebody was watching. So travel with a security camera or two and definitely a smoke detector or to the number of or don’t broadcast your exact location while you’re there. Okay. So if I am out and about working at a cafe and I want to post a picture of it, I will take a picture. And if I want to do the the Instagram, you know, picture of being in this amazing environment, you know, traveling and and working, you know, and we all come on, most of us like to be able to do that. The, you know, the. A little brag the showing off a little bit when you but when you do that. I never post it right then and there. I always wait until I am well gone from the place a week or even a couple weeks. So I try to generally not keep our location live. At time now we may talk in broad terms. If you’ve been listening to podcasts for all you know, we are in Costa Rica and that’s pretty much all. You know, Costa Rica is a really big place and we’re just not going to do much more than that. When we post pictures, we don’t have Geo. We have make sure that there are geotagged and things like that. You don’t want to broadcast that your a especially. Well, I would say that you’re a you know in some countries you don’t want to broadcast that maybe you’re a a CEO of a company and you’re you’re traveling there That may elevate a type of target on you. Even if your company is not a multimillion dollar company, people won’t know that they’ll see SEO in target. So just be careful when you’re broadcasting your location on social media and stuff like that. Be smart and be very, very careful with that number of five without being, you know, without crossing the line of cultural appropriation. Dress like a local, dress like a local as much as you can. You know, there there are some places in the world where just nobody wear shorts. None of the locals wear shorts like there’s usually have a C logo. If somebody’s got shorts on is a tourist. All right. So basically try not to dress like a tourist that we strive to not look like a tourist. There are times that we do. We can’t help it, but we really strive not to look like a tourist when we’re out and about and we just try to use common sense, you know, be don’t don’t have your phone in your back pocket. Make sure, you know, when it comes to your dress. I travel with three pairs of cargo pants. I don’t travel with any jeans. They take up too much space. So I’ve got cargo pants, three pairs that the bottom, the legs zip off. So I’ve got three pairs of pants, three pairs of shorts and each of them in the shorts part on the outside of one of the legs I have pockets that zip and it’s a zipper on them and that’s where I’ll keep my my wallet or my phone or things like that, I don’t think keep things in an accessible pocket. So dress smart and dress like a local again without crossing the line of cultural appropriation. Right. So there are the first of five told you it was going to take us super long to go through all 14. We’re moving right along. But before we move on to number six, I just would really appreciate it if you could do me a favor. If you’re enjoying the podcast, if this is something that has been helpful to you, do all the nice things. Leave a review, subscribe, leave a rating. It means the world to me. I really do appreciate it. And so if you could you could do that. It helps other people find it. It helps encourage me, which is nice. Come on. We all like to be encouraged, right? So that would be great. And if you have any constructive criticism, I want to learn if you have any suggestions on how to make the podcast better, the quality of the podcast better, my presentation of the content better, whatever it is, drop me an email Eric at any podcast dot com. I would really appreciate the opportunity to learn from you to grow. I’m very open to to growing. We all need to be open to to growing and getting better. And I believe I can learn from anybody and everybody. So please make sure if you have been getting anything out of this good, leave a rerating, leave a review. If you have some things to say that are so good, which is the email to me in my email to me, I would really appreciate that that number six, I don’t know why I just held up six fingers There’s no video in here, but I’m sitting all by myself in my office in Costa Rica and I just held up six fingers in case you wanted to know. So number six, make sure you use a good, reliable VPN. All right. We I used to I used to VPNs. I use clear VPN, which is part of my set app, which is a service I use that’s only available for Apple for Mac users set up. I pay a $10 a month fee and I have access to, oh my gosh, I don’t know how many Mac apps that work on my phone, my, my Mac, my, my iPad. It’s absolutely amazing. And one of them in there is a VPN. I have my calendar through that. There are several a clean my mac several things that I use that are all part of that are individually paid but. They they they I get access to them with my subscription to set. App you can find a link to set app on the resource page of my website. And so one of the things I use out of that is clear VPN, but I also use Surfshark. I use both of them, and especially if I’m out and about and going to be on any type of public wi fi I use that I will test and check my wi fi at a Airbnb if we’re going to be there for a season to make sure it’s as secure and safe as possible. And then I will work from time to time without my VPN and that because while the VPNs are great and helpful, there are times that they do interfere with my Zoom calls and I’m on Zoom a lot. And so there are times they interfere with my Zoom calls. Now for you, really techie type nerd folks out there, you can split tunnel for your zoom. You know, go check that out in Zoom and it’ll help you set all of that out. But you can do split tunneling. That is way more than I want to get into and mess with. But I’ve had people tell me that that I had, but it’s just not that big of a deal for me. I’m not doing you know, I’m not on public Wi-Fi, having to zoom every day in a in a coffee shop or something like that where where I’m exposing myself. Now, the other option is surfshark. That’s a great one. And you can get a really good deal on Surfshark at DNI podcast dot com forward slash surfshark. All of these links will of course be in the show notes. Number seven. Number seven, this is really important and I was surprised to discover just how big of a deal this is and how many people end up getting hacked because of this. When you’re working in a public place, be very aware of what’s behind you. There are a number of places where there are cameras, and those cameras could be pointing right at your keyboard, right at your skin, even. You might be like, why use a screen protector that, you know, prevents people from looking sideways on the screen? That’s great. But are you covering your keyboard? Probably not. So be very aware. Any time I choose a place in a public venue to work in, I always look behind me and above me. I constantly, you know, I scan them real well. I look to see if there’s any cameras, any places cameras could be hidden before I choose my place to work. And then I’m constantly looking around me and making sure that nobody’s got a phone pointed at me. Okay? Especially to my left and my right. If somebody comes in beside me, I’m really paying attention and stuff like that, you know? And if they trying to, you know, they sit there and they may be right, like look like they’re on their phone. But if their phone is pointed at me, especially in a way that could see my keyboard, like I just I stop typing or I’m really, really aware of what I’m, I’m typing at that point. So check for that. That’s why one of the reasons I do try to use my touch ID is as much as possible to enter passwords. So it’s just with my fingertip and I’m not actually having to physically type in any type of my my keywords. So really number really important. Number eight, we’re only halfway through and only in 18 minutes. Oh, my gosh. We’re crushing at people. Let’s keep going. We’re halfway through number eight for increasing your security on the road and safety backup, everything to secure cloud. You know, I keep a very, very little data, really hardly any data at all on my computer. I have secure, trusted sources for my cloud. Now, I know people might want to send me some hate mail or things like this, like, oh, but that can be vulnerable. I know everything can be vulnerable. All right. There’s nothing that’s 100% secure. Perfectly secure if it has the Internet connected to it. So chill out. But, you know, for the most part, that you can definitely choose some very, very secure, well-known, secure option. So use high quality. Don’t look for the cheap stuff. Look use for high quality, secure cloud storage and services encryption. If you use like Google Workspaces, you have a team like we do, like we’re constantly making sure that all the enhanced security features are turned on and everything we’ve got everything maxed out there. We do not store, we do not email passwords. I don’t let my clients email us passwords. We use a service called one time secret dot com to have clients send us passwords or just send them passwords. We have to we’ll also use you know, we use up. Password service. I know all of them have had issues. I like LastPass. They had a breach a couple years ago. Yeah. Uh huh. Okay. They did. I’ve evaluated things I’m not. You know, we we still. We still use that. We’ve got two factor authentication. It’s super, super secure. I can share notes without sharing. I can share passwords without sharing the actual password with my team. We take passwords, security, very, very serious. All right. So I just actually covered two right there. That was number eight and number 12. Number eight, backup everything to a secure cloud. And I just look down the line. Number 12, be uber cautious with passwords. Wow. You just got two tips in one. This is amazing. Number nine, travel with a fire slash water safe or water proof? Ouch. You can actually I’m going to put a link to the one that we have in the the show notes. This thing is amazing. We got it off of an Amazon. It’s a two pocketed fireproof document bag. It’s 15 by 11 inches. Is not super thick. And you we you can, you know, use it for anything you want but it’s we keep our most important documents that we have the travel with in there. And it’s got this super amazing zipper on it and it’s great up to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. Now, that’s not bad. Okay. 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s a pretty good, pretty good, you know. And so, you know, we as we’re out and about, if we don’t have our passports with us, we’ll have those in there and locked up and secure and hidden. But we’ve got some documents in there that we we travel with there. Sometimes we have needed things. We’ve we’ve had to renew passports while we’re out of the country. We you can’t go in to an embassy with with photocopies of some of these documents. You we have to have some of our documents with us and so have those we have backups of all of our documents in an electronic version that my wife and I can access. We also have back ups. We have official copies, legal copies of all of our most important documents in a fireproof safe with one of our family. And so we’ve got that. But traveling with this fire, waterproof, safe pouch, document pouch, envelope is is really something I would recommend checking into. Again, I’ll put a link to that in the show notes. Number ten, travel with a computer cable lock. There’s all kinds of types on there. I’m not going to share a specific one in the show notes. Just go to Amazon and search for it. You can get these. They work great. They’ve got some in Mac that there’s a little you. What you do is you kind of take out one of the the screws that holds the bottom plate on your your computer. You put this attachment on. They send you a little bit longer. Screw that. You can run through there, that thing that screws on there, and then you can click in a cable. Now you may be thinking, well, and then that cable, you take that cable and you wrap that cable around something. Okay, you know what? Now, there’s no way to permanently secure this. I mean, I don’t care. When I when we lived in our passport control, we had our house. You know, I you know, even if I put something in a safe, something if they really wanted to. Could have walked out with the safe. You know, the whole idea is you’re just wanting to slow people down and deter people, not tell you. Right now in Costa Rica, the house we’re in, in Costa Rica is in most all of Latin America. To be honest, in all of Latin America, all of our houses have had phenomenal safety bars on the windows gates, you know, some you know, the barbed wire at the top of the the gates, you know, like they really do a great job deterring, you know, opportunistic thieves. Well, you can do the same thing when you’re out and about working, you know, in busy cafes or coffee shops. You know, I may want to close my laptop, lid down and just, you know, jump up to the counter to get a fresh cup of coffee when I don’t want to fill everything up, you know, in my backpack, but everything. So, you know, make sure nothing loose is laid out. Never leave your phone laying on the table. But I like having that my my computer locked. And if I am going to be in someplace that’s not a secure, you know, a hostel or something like that know, I would definitely want to be able to lock that. And a lot of times you can use those in a way that they also lock around your backpack straps and things like that. So really, really great. Something to. I can do number 11. Number 11, have proper insurance. Have proper insurance. Secure yourself. Secure your family. Have proper insurance, including the key person insurance. See if you can have key person insurance. What is key person insurance? If if I become incapacitated in some way death, that would that would be a good way. Well, I wouldn’t should say good way, but that’d be a permanent way. Death, disability, illness, sickness. And I can’t work. We have insurance that would kick in, that would give us money to hire someone to to run things. Why? I’m not there. If I. If I pass away, it is a enough money that my wife could hire a full time CEO to run the company for two years and not have to worry about her income from the business. With our income from the business being decreased for four for two years. But we also have additional life insurance. But so or she could use that that money to hire someone to facilitate selling the business and so key person is insurance. Love the people you know love your people. Set them up with insurance. Have some term life insurance, have travel insurance, have key person insurance. It’s worth it. Have it get it in place. I ain’t going to talk about number 12 now because I already talked about it. Be super cautious with passwords. I’m going to jump right into number 13 and 14, my last two, and then I’m going to share this week’s leadership tip of the week. So make sure you stick around for that, your leadership as well. Let me say, before I get to these last two and then the leadership tip, a couple of people this week I was talking to and group coaching or one on one coaching and and they they were they had these aha moments. It’s one of my favorite things about, about coaching. Every, every week I see people on the other side of the computer screen have these like, oh wow, they had these aha moments and it’s the and for many of them it’s the moment. Then they realize that, that they’re not just a business owner. This isn’t just a side hustle. They’re they’re a leader. Even when they don’t have a team, when they realize when they when they embrace the fact that they are a leader of an organization leading themselves, leading an organization when they realize that organizations get the results they’re organized to get. And leadership is what sets that in place. Leadership is what guides the leadership. You know, everything rises and falls on leadership. Leadership is the capacity of of your ability of your company. It it all comes down to leadership every single time. It’s this aha moment. And then I immediately see them start to get results because they realize I got to lead better, I got to learn leadership and they start learning. And it’s so much fun that we see people, people that are doing this as a side hustle, trying to get to the point where they’re able to leave the 95 people that have already left the nine, the five people that have no desire to travel more people that are wanting to travel, more people that are traveling it it it all comes down that it’s one of my favorite things about about about coaching is how many people have that. Wow, I don’t have to be the one that does the things I’m selling. You know, I was talking to somebody today the other day and he’s like, Well, I want to start adding SEO services to my services. I’m start adding SEO. It’s gonna take me a year to learn it. And I’m like, Why? Why, why are you going to learn it? You don’t understand why you’re going to learn it. And he’s like, Well, if I’m going to sell it, I’m going to have to learn how to lead. If I’m a lead, people that are doing it, I’m going to have to know. And I was like, Have you ever bought a car? He’s like, Yeah. I was like, Okay, what? The person that sold you the car. Were they able to tell you how the car worked? Well, no, not probably not really. No, they probably weren’t. And the people that were supervising them, were they able to know? Probably not, no. Probably. Probably not. Okay. People that sell cars don’t build cars. The realtor that sells houses, they don’t build the houses they sell. They’re not electricians, they’re not plumbers. You know, they they don’t what do all these people do? They help you see yourself with this solution to the problem you have. And then you know how it all works. They leave that up to other people. And and we do that. I do the same thing with me. I have I have a team that knows how to do things that I don’t know how to do. And that’s the way it should be. I don’t need to know what they know. Okay, I know. Well, how how do you lead them? I look at the results. Did we get results? Great. We didn’t get results. Something’s wrong. There’s a system problem. We have a broken system, people. Okay, because if you have a sustained problem in your business, it’s a systems issue. These are all the kinds of things that are leadership. You got to learn leadership. So I still have my last two. I’m going to get to these. But this is why I end with leadership. I end every episode with the leadership. Tip of the week. Don’t skip it. Don’t think. Well, we’re done now and I can turn off. No, no, no. Honestly, the leadership stuff is the most valuable, in my opinion, for you. The rest of this is good. It’s it’s important, it’s helpful. But it’s the leadership stuff that is the game changer. So make sure you stick around for that. And if you want help developing yourself as a leader to run your business, to run your life, better reach out to me. That’s what I do in my coaching. I help you become the leader you need to be. So you have the business and lifestyle you want. What number that are key to last. Once here we go. Number 13, travel with back up payment methods. Divide it out into other places. Okay. What I mean by that, don’t keep all of your payment methods in your wallet. That’s ridiculous. Don’t keep, you know, have a couple of backups and a couple of different places. You don’t want to be left stranded if your wallet gets stolen. And it may take it may take a while to get your back to get your replacement. All right. We learned this in Peru that one of our ATM cards got eaten by one of the ATM machines. I mean, it got eaten because we walked away and left it there and we realized and went back. There was no way to retrieve that ATM card. And I’m telling you right now, there’s not they don’t have mailing addresses in Peru. So to try to get an ATM card mailed to us from a bank, our bank wasn’t I mean, literally, we didn’t have a mailing. We had a night, we had a house, a nice house, and but there’s no mail service. There’s no no way to get it mailed to us. Luckily we had a backup was good. The next time we were in the States, we were able to get our backup card. So. Have a backup plan and have a backup plan for your black backup plan to access your money. So travel with backup payment methods and in separate places. And a little tip for you that may be parents traveling with your kids. Our kids are old enough now. They’re teenagers. Len, my wife and I go out. We leave a backup payment plan in the house that if something was to happen to us, they would be able to survive. They would be able to buy groceries. They would be able to pay for things until are too. Honestly, it’s my parents. My dad is our backup plan. If something was to happen to my wife and I, if we’re in a car accident or something like that. He has agreed to be ready to fly to where our kids are. But our kids our kids are old enough now and self-sustainable enough now that they could totally live. But we live a backup payment method with them. So be secure with your payment methods. But travel with backup wins. And the fourth and final one use apple airtags or something similar in everything. Just do it. They’re amazing. You know, tag kids, you know, tag your bags you carry out and about during the day. It’s so convenient to have those. All right. So those are my 14 to now. What is my leadership tip of the week. This is this is a golden leadership tip. If you’re leading the team, you’re going to want this for your team and you’re going to tell your team this. If you are a leader in your family, this is a leadership tip that works with your children in your marriage. All right. And here it is. You ready? You ready? Here we go. Trust is built in the absence of secrets. That’s good, right? Trust is built in the absence of secrets. We tend to think that if somebody is a good secret keeper, they can be trusted. Okay. We can trust them because they can keep a good secret. All right. But secrets don’t build a great marriage. Secrets don’t build healthy relationships with your kids. And secrets don’t build a healthy teen culture. Don’t keep secrets from your team. Now there is a time and place to share things. There is not that is not saying everybody needs to know every thing that is happening. You know that that’s not necessarily an issue of of keeping a secret. You know what I’m talking about? Trust is built in the absence of secrets. Be vulnerable. Be transparent. Be honest. Trust is built in the absence of secrets. Well, my friends, thank you for listening to this episode. Episode 23. Oh, my gosh. I am absolutely loving recording these. I want to hear from you to make sure that you’re loving getting something out of them. So leave that rating. Leave that review. Try me an email Erica Danny podcast dot com. Would love to hear from you. Until next time, my friend chase the big dream. Leave with courage and safe travels.