If you perform research outside of the office, you have a number of ways to secure your research session. The most obvious is to use encrypted browser sessions, like searching https://www.google.com – note the s after the http – rather than the unencrypted site. You might also use a VPN. Lifehacker has a nice description of the Disconnect Web browser add-on, which can protect your wireless connection against sidejacking. An added bonus is that it blocks some of the tracking done by advertisers and other sites while you’re surfing the Web.
Disconnect is a free add-on for Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Apple Safari.