Tag Archives: airport

The things people leave behind

I’m on the way back to Melbourne now from my trip to Sydney.

Waiting at the Qantas Club waiting for my flight, I’m using a public computer to logon and check my email. (Laptop battery flat because I surrendered my power pack to a staff member who forgot theirs)

it’s interesting (but not surprising) to see the documents people have downloaded onto this public terminal but not deleted.
I did go looking for them but merely stumbled upon them when saving a temp document (nothing sensitive) myself.

Dividend reports, names and addresses, they’re all there.

Would you really want to trust a public terminal with private and confidential information?

This is also possibly a bad reflection on Qantas. They should have a more stringent cleanout policy in place to reset a system after use.

My advise:
-where possible, don’t use a public terminal
-never log into sensitive sites such as financial sites
-if you must, it must be secure, not clear text.
-where possible, use a web based service to access files. Citrix if your company offers it, that way no data leaves the corporate network.
-if you have to download files to the public machine, know where you save them and delete them. Directly opening a file from a browser will open the file from a temporary location you may not be able to find or delete. (Although it should get cleaned out)
-Always restart the computer when you are finished.
Many cleanout routines only take effect on a reboot and not a logoff.