We hardly think about the stuff we have on our phones. But we should, right now. In the wrong hands it has the power to damage or even destroy us. We’ve seen it happen before and we’ll see it happen again, but we tell ourselves, ‘it won’t happen to me’, until it does.
When people think of losing their phone, they think of losing a pricey device. The real loss, though, is priceless information and privacy. There is no excuse to not take action and protect your information.
Here are some things you can do, right now, to be safe.
- Screen Lock Password
This is the easiest to implement. Make it at least 16 characters long, containing capitals, simples, numbers and symbols. Random is best. This will make password cracking almost impossible. You can set it up so your device cannot be accessed via USB if it is locked.
- Suspicious Links
Don’t just click like a fool. Always read before you click. Anything suspicious, just delete. Most attacks require the user to click something that allows the intrusion.
- Don’t Blindly Install Apps
Especially if they’re not from a trusted source, be careful. Again, read before you click. Comments left by others can save you. Even apps from trusted sources have been known to contain malicious code.
Encrypt the device and any SD Cards you might have. Make sure you know the key and note it down somewhere other than the phone. Use encrypted communication as far as possible.
- Keep the OS Updated
Keeping software updated means closing known security loop holes. Leaving them open leaves you vulnerable.
- Lock Your Apps or Logout
In our quest for ease we leave ourselves logged into apps. Some people even remain logged into banking and other high risk apps. Log out, use a password manager or lock the apps.
- Free Wi-Fi
Avoid open Wi-Fi networks unless you know for sure that the network is safe. Even then, avoid using things like banking and other sensitive services while on unknown networks. Use a VNP, if you can, for further protection. See people being scammed on free Wi-Fi.
- Note Your IMEI Number
If your phone is lost, knowing this number can help you locate it or at least make life difficult for the person who stole it.
- Security Software
Use anti-virus software. Use phone tracking and remote wiping software or features.
- Nude Selfies/Sex Tapes
Just don’t. But if you must, encrypt the files, lock them and don’t share them.
Your information can be used to rob, blackmail or humiliate you. People ignore information safety claiming they have nothing to hide. But it’s not about hiding; it’s about whether you make an easy target for a thief.
You don’t leave your home unlocked just because you have nothing to hide, do you? So why your phone?