Like it or not, your privacy is under attack as nefarious forces ranging from lone wolf hackers to organized crime scheme to access the personal information on your mobile device. Your mobile device contains passwords, contact information, social media posts, voicemail messages, banking information, photos, and more. This means that your smartphone, cell phone, or tablet, is a sort of gateway to your private data. And if criminals are able to access your personal information, they can commit identity theft fraud and wreak all sorts of havoc on you.
Fortunately, however, you don’t have to be like a sitting duck merely waiting to be victimized by thieves. Read on for some tips on how to protect sensitive data on your mobile device.
Fortify Your Mobile Device
If your mobile device has a passcode feature, by all means activate it. When activated, you or anyone else who comes into contact with your mobile device will have to enter a multi-digit code to access your mobile device. If your mobile device supports some of the newer types of authentication features, such as fingerprint recognition, biometric scanning technology, or even facial recognition options, then make use of these extra layers of security. Doing so will make it more difficult for someone with unauthorized access to your mobile device to be able to use it.
Keep Software Updated
One thing you absolutely must do is keep the software on your mobile device up to date. That means you ought not delay downloading updates whenever they become available. It’s easy to put such things off, but delay can be dangerous. If your device allows for automatic updates, then it might be a good idea to go with this option. When you consider that many successful hacking attempts are the result of vulnerabilities that could have been fixed with a timely software update, you can appreciate the necessity of keeping your software current.
Whether you have an iPhone or an Android device, there are ways to track it and to even access it remotely if it’s ever lost or stolen. If your device is missing, you can use a “find my device” app to access it, delete content, and find out where it is so that it can be retrieved.
Be Wary About Permissions
You’ve likely experienced this scenario before: You download an app from your favorite app store and, during the installation process, you’re asked to grant different types of permissions such as access to your mobile device’s camera, files, microphone, and other things. There may be legitimate reasons from many of these permission requests. But there may be instances where there’s no real rhyme or reason why a particular app should need access to certain things on your mobile device. Don’t hesitate to deny access as required. Also stick to reputable app developers to avoid any questionable apps that might have spyware embedded in them.
Use Unprotected Wi-Fi Cautiously
It’s best to avoid unprotected Wi-Fi or hotspots if you can do so. Using such networks will potentially leave you susceptible to a loss of privacy. Specifically, virtually anyone will be able to monitor your online activity. This can be dangerous if, for instance, you’re engaged in banking transactions. If you must use an open hotspot, be sure to either use your mobile device’s own web connection or get a VPN app that will make sure that your online activity can’t be monitored.
It’s actually possible to lock individual apps in the way that you can lock your mobile device with a passcode. This will offer an extra layer of protection since anyone who gains unlawful access to your phone or tablet won’t be able to access, say, your banking apps unless they know the passcode. So in addition to using the passcode for your mobile device, also use it for apps.
As you can see, there are ways you can protect the sensitive data on your mobile device. By following the aforementioned tips, you’ll be able to reduce the odds of your mobile device being compromised.