We’ve come to the point in our technological development where mobile tech is starting to become as powerful as the desktop computers that we have at home or at the office. And while this has opened an entire world of mobile functionality for the average user, it also means that some problems that were once exclusive to computers can now be found on smartphones, with the most troubling being security.
While smartphones still remain far more secure than the average desktop, on a purely physical level, they tend to be more vulnerable as they’re easily able to be taken away on the street or lost. Fortunately, for those that are interested in protecting the data on your smartphone, there are a number of simple and effective ways to keeping your smartphone secure.
- Screen Locks
This is the most basic level of security that a smartphone offers, but it’s also one of the most effective. A simple screen lock disallows anyone else from accessing your smartphone directly, and many phones provide the option of formatting the device automatically if the wrong pattern or pin is put in too many times. There are more than a few options available for the kind of lock that you can have on your phone, namely pattern, biometrics, voice activation, and a simple pin lock.
- SIM Card Lock
A screen lock is the first defence, but it’s also possible to add a lock to your SIM card. This prevents anyone from taking the SIM and using it on a different device.
- Lock Internal Storage
While it’s easy to lock a phone and its SIM card, many forget that their microSD card often comes without a digital lock pre-installed. And because it’s so easy to remove a memory card from a phone, it’s best to lock the information in the card with a pin.
- Avoid Public Wi-Fi
While public Wi-Fi was at one point seen as a means of providing free internet to anyone that had a compatible device, it didn’t take long for people to start using it as a way of accessing hundreds of devices at any one time, and it’s always enticing to check out what’s happening on Facebook or the latest NRL premiership odds. With access to the device, it’s possible to both retrieve and send information, and it allows for the sending on potentially malicious software into the smartphone. For this reason, it’s best to avoid open public Wi-Fi as much as possible.
- Avoid 3rd Party Applications
By default, all Android and Apple devices will have the option to download a 3rd party app disable in their settings. What this means is that the user is unable to download apps that aren’t available through the Google Play store or App Store for Android and Apple respectively. The apps that are found on official stores are often verified to ensure that no malicious malware is present, and that they can be downloaded safely.