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Whether you take your laptop between meetings throughout the day or leave it on your desk except for the occasional trip home to catch up on emails and requests over the weekend, there are a few best practices to help keep your equipment — and your data — safe while transporting your laptop.

Laptops have come a long way from the bulky 10 pound devices we carried around just a few years ago. Today, many are much less than five pounds, which makes it really tempting to grab a corner and walk into the next room with your laptop.  Not only is there a chance of dropping your device, holding your computer by the corner actually puts a strain on the device, which could damage hinges — or worse, put pressure on the hard drive and cause data corruption.  Always use two hands.

It is also important to turn off or put your device in sleep mode while in transit.  There are many moving parts in the hard drive of your laptop, and there is a possibility of damaging moving parts while in transport. Your best bet is to turn it off and keep it in a protective sleeve when moving your portable device.

I usually have headphones plugged into my laptop- to listen to music and to have frequent Zoom video conference calls.  With any external devices — whether it’s a mouse, headphones or a USB drive — be sure to unplug all devices and place them in a separate compartment before transporting to avoid damage to the exterior of your laptop.

Finally, be sure to back up your data.  Although a more comprehensive backup is important for businesses, on a personal level, using an external USB or cloud storage such as Dropbox or Google Drive to store important projects gives you peace of mind if something does happen to your laptop.

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