Smartphone is everything for today’s mobile user. Also with the launch of Google Wallet and other mobile payment services it has become a wallet for everyone as it replaces the credit cards & money people use to carry. For present generation it is a vault, where people store their valuable information, passwords and confidential docs. But many times, people forget to secure their smartphones and regret when they either lose it or if someone steals it. . If you use your smartphone or tablet like a PC and store your private data on it, then providing it better security is of course your responsibility and here are some useful tips-
Keep it locked up, always.
Well locking up of the screen sucks big time but it not only prevents you from protecting your phone but also prevents opening of any application that opens by mistake when the phone is not locked. Locking the screen with a passcode is the simplest way to protect the phone. It is easy to set a screen passcode but it is so difficult to break the protection provided by the same. Let me provide you a solid reference for this- There was a case where FBI could not crack Android Pattern-Screen Lock. Yes, it is true. After many unsuccessful tries, the Bureau had to seek Google’s help to unlock the Android phone of the suspect in San Diego.
Android uses Pattern-Screen Lock and when user wants to access the device, he is required to draw a specific pattern on screen. If you forget the pattern, you can reset it by entering your Gmail ID and password. But not all Android phones have Pattern-Screen Lock; however, they may have a numeric or alphanumeric passcode or facial recognition. iPhone users can choose a simple four-digit numeric PIN or an eight-character alphanumeric passcode.
Rooting or Jailbreaking means breaking the security.
Apple’s iOS has a built-in security facility. But you can lose it, once you jailbreak your phone. Similarly rooting an Android phone is the equivalent to jailbreaking an iPhone. By jailbreaking iPhone, you can affect its security architecture. Android’s security is also affected once you root it. Yes, there are advantages of rooting or jailbreaking a smartphone. If you root or jailbreak your device for some apps, you can get some additional features but the same apps can threaten the security of your device too. Here the best thing to do would be not to install those apps which ask the user to root/jailbreak the device.
Don’t Install App with Illogical Permissions.
When you install an Android app, you need to approve a list of permissions. But many users just click to allow them all; however, it is not a good way to install Android app. While installing apps on Android, check if there is something illogical, e.g. a flashlight app is asking to access GPS features or contacts. Why this app wants to access GPS or your contacts? Most of the Android apps want permissions but not all permissions are harmful. Apple follows a rigorous process for iPhone apps. Apple does not release the apps that want irrational permissions. Though, there have been slips-ups. But user has facility on their iPhone device to turn off permissions that any app does not need.
Be Informed, Be Secured
Every update on your Android app mostly includes patches for security flaw. Many people keep on delaying these updates but the best advice is- install update as soon as they show-up on the device. Disable the USB debugging option because it allows hackers to access the device when it is connected to PC via USB. Many Android phones include full-disk encryption and it also secures your phone. If your phone has this feature too, enable it now. In iPhone you can check if backups are encrypted. You can also lock the SIM through PIN or use an antivirus for protecting the device.
It is important to protect the smartphone that carries all the important & valuable information related to you. Try some of these basic tips to protect your phone.