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The Best Anti-Theft Backpacks To Keep Your Items Safe And Out Of Reach

If you typically carry your personal items in a backpack, choosing one with anti-theft features is a good idea. The best anti-theft backpacks are made from slash-proof materials and have built-in safety elements like specialized locking mechanisms, RFID-blocking technology, hidden zippers and more. These factors can deter thieves and protect against possible data theft. Our top choice is the Pacsafe EXP45 Anti-Theft Carry-On Travel Pack, which is a spacious, durable and well-designed bag with puncture-resistant zippers and an RFID-blocking pocket.

Investing in a reliable backpack lets you enjoy peace of mind, knowing that your valuables are safe wherever your journey takes you. From a fully waterproof option to a sleek carry-all best suited for business travel, we evaluated hundreds of options from established and newer-to-market brands. Below, the best anti-theft backpacks of 2024.

Best Anti-Theft Backpack Overall

Secure And Durable

Pacsafe EXP45 Anti-Theft Carry-On Travel Pack

Weight: 3.9 pounds | Dimensions: 7.9 x 13 x 21.7 inches

The Pacsafe EXP45 Anti-Theft Carry-On stands out amongst its peers as the ultimate companion for travelers seeking security and functionality. It’s made from a durable, cut-resistant fabric, and it has an RFID-blocking pocket and puncture-resistant ToughZip zippers (which also have interlocking zipper pulls) to thwart pickpockets better. In terms of storage, it has several handy compartments, including a padded laptop sleeve and multiple internal pockets for better organization. What really sets this bag apart from other options is its large size (it has a whopping 45-liter capacity) and its ergonomic design to ensure comfort during extended wear.


Best Budget Anti-Theft Backpack

Folds Down Into Its Own Zippered Compartment

Travelon Anti-Theft Packable Backpack

Weight: 11.8 ounces | Dimensions: 10.5 x 17 x 6 inches

This bag is our top pick for budget-conscious travelers who want something functional and sleek. Travelon’s Anti-Theft backpack has a slash-resistant mesh barrier, cut-proof straps, locking compartments and an RFID-blocking pocket. What’s particularly handy is that it can fold down into its own zip compartment when not in use. Although packable, the main compartment can hold an impressive 17 liters.


Best Lightweight Anti-Theft Backpack

Transforms From A Backpack To A Crossbody Bag

Solo New York Stealth Hybrid Backpack

Weight: 1.21 pounds | Dimensions: 14.4 x 11.6 x 4 inches

If you’re looking for a lightweight, easy-to-carry option, you can’t go wrong with the Solo New York Stealth Hybrid Backpack. It has slash-proof fabric on the body of the bag and cut-proof webbing on the straps, lockable zippers, a security latch on the front pocket and an RFID-blocking compartment. The bag transforms from a backpack to a crossbody bag with the pull of a strap—a helpful feature for when you’re moving through crowded areas and would prefer your possessions on your front. Other functional elements include a water-resistant coating, a back strap that can slide over your suitcase handle and a padded laptop compartment. 


Best Waterproof Anti-Theft Backpack

Keeps Your Belongings Safe And Dry

Yeti Panga 28 Airtight Waterproof Submersible Backpack

Weight: 3.9 pounds | Dimensions: 12.5 x 7 x 20 inches

Most anti-theft backpacks are water-resistant, but the Yeti Panga 28L is one of the few fully waterproof options. It can keep contents dry even after being submerged in water for 30 minutes, so this is a great choice if you’re going to be on a boat or embarking on any outdoor excursions. The patented, puncture- and slash-resistant shell adds to the overall durability, and the HydroLok Zipper is also helpful for safeguarding your valuables. Because it’s designed to keep water out, it takes a little muscle to open—it would be pretty challenging for a pickpocket to get inside this backpack without you noticing. Also great: There’s a chest and hip strap for added security while you’re moving about.


Best Anti-Theft Backpack For Organization

Roomy With Three Main Compartments

MOST POPULAR

Decathlon Forclaz Travel 500 Organizer 40L Backpack

Weight: 2.86 pounds | Dimensions: 21.6 x 12.5 x 10.5 inches

Stay organized on the go with the Decathlon Forclaz Travel 500 Organizer 40L Backpack. Inside the clamshell-style bag are three internal compartments (small, medium and large) that act like packing cubes. There’s also a separate laptop sleeve, two water bottle pockets, a hidden front pocket and a pocket on the padded hip belt. The main compartment is kept secure with a pad-lockable zip. Plus, the bag comes with a rain cover and a 10-year warranty.


Best Stylish Anti-Theft Backpack

Well-Designed With Padded Laptop Compartment

Arden Cove MB Packing Backpack

Weight: 2.1 pounds | Dimensions: 15 x 11 x 6 inches

This faux leather backpack from Arden Cove earns serious style points, and it’s also cleverly organized and offers features that keep your belongings safe. The bag is slash-resistant, has clasps to secure the zippers and has an RFID-blocking pocket for your passport. It also has a hidden pocket for small items like a phone, keys or wallet. The middle compartment opens wide like a suitcase, making it easy to pack clothing—a nice feature for those who like to travel carry-on only. The separate padded laptop compartment (suitable for devices 15 inches and smaller) makes accessing your electronics easy, and a pass-through strap loops the entire bag over your suitcase.


Best Anti-Theft Backpack For Business Travel

Sleek And Sturdy

Briggs & Riley HTA Large Cargo Backpack

Weight: 2.5 pounds | Dimensions: 18.5 x 14 x 8 inches

Great for urban commuters or those jet-setting for meetings, this sleek Briggs & Riley backpack features water-resistant, anti-slash fabric and lockable zippers to safeguard against thieves. In addition to an RFID-blocking passport pocket, there are plenty of compartments (including a hidden back pocket) for discreetly storing your valuables. What’s more, it has adjustable straps, a padded and breathable back panel, a slip-through back strap and a top grab handle. The brand also offers a lifetime warranty, so you can rest assured this isn’t something you’ll need to replace anytime soon.


Best Anti-Theft Backpack For Outdoors

Built To Handle Adverse Conditions

Osprey Transporter Global Carry-On

Weight: 2.8 pounds | Dimensions: 10.6 x 13.8 x 19.7 inches

If you’re looking for a backpack that marries anti-theft tech with the ability to move, this versatile travel pack from Osprey is a great option. Made with durable recycled fabrics, it’s abrasion-, puncture- and water-resistant. It also has oodles of travel-friendly components, like rear panel access to the padded laptop sleeve, a luggage pass-through, a zippered external pocket for toiletries, internal compression and a detachable shoulder strap. It also has a clam-shell opening for easy packing and organizing. A chest and waist strap makes it easier to carry heavy loads—a necessary feature considering it has a spacious 36L of internal storage.


Why Trust Forbes Vetted

  • Bailey Berg, the author of this piece, is a travel journalist with over a decade of experience. She has researched and written scores of stories on travel products, including the best travel safety devices, best TSA-approved luggage locks and more.
  • This story was assigned and produced by senior travel editor Astrid Taran, a 7-year industry veteran who’s visited over 35 countries.
  • To keep you up-to-date on the best selections (and prices) available, we refresh this roundup regularly.


How We Chose The Best Anti-Theft Backpacks

  • We relied on expert advice, independent reviews, research and personal experience to make our recommendations. Berg personally used many options on this list during her travels worldwide.
  • We analyzed several important features, including dimensions, weight, capacity, materials, overall design and extra features, to assess the overall value and help readers pinpoint the best option for their needs.
  • The final products on this list reflect in-depth research conducted by our writer and meticulous vetting by the editorial team.


What To Look For In An Anti-Theft Backpack

There are several factors to consider when shopping for the best anti-theft backpacks. Here’s what to look for.

Secure Compartments

Look for options with lockable compartments to store your most valuable items, such as passports, wallets and electronics. Another thing to look for are hidden pockets—these discrete pockets are ideal for storing cash, credit cards and smartphones and keeping them out of sight. RFID-blocking pockets are also essential to prevent electronic pickpocketing and possible data theft.

Materials

Opt for bags made from slash-proof materials like high-density polyester or nylon, which are durable and hard for thieves to cut through. Details like reinforced stitching and straps, high-quality zippers and a waterproof (or water-resistant) coating can ensure your backpack holds up over time and won’t break down after several trips.

Ergonomics

A comfortable backpack is crucial, especially if you'll be carrying it for extended periods. Look for padded shoulder straps and adjustable sternum and waist straps for added support and weight distribution.


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