With the introduction of smartphones, our life has become so easy and convenient. Through our mobile devices, we can easily manage our day to day activities such as shopping, banking, social networking, and much more. That’s why we love our smartphones and can’t even imagine our lives without them. However, we should remember that all this ease and convenience comes with various other problems that is the need of mobile security.
Smartphones give easy access to innumerable apps and web features, but they also pose a risk of identity theft to the users. For example, most of us regularly access our social media accounts through our smartphones very frequently. But to our worse, we never sign out from our account which leads to the risk of social media identity theft.
Almost everyone owns a smartphone these days. According to a study, smartphone users are three times more likely to become the victim of identity theft as compared to PC users. 1 out of every 14 smartphone users fall for identity theft. The number keeps on increasing.
When it comes to identity theft, your smartphone may not be as smart as you think. Just like you safeguard your personal belongings such in your house, locker, etc., in a similar way, you can keep your mobile secure.
Take the following steps to protect your identity from being lost through your smartphone and the information stored inside:
1. Lock your phone
It seems like the most obvious and common step. Still, there are several people that don’t follow this. You are giving an open invitation to criminals by not using a password on your phone. Strangers can easily access all types of information – from your contacts to your credit card information, in case your phone is lost or stolen.
Having a password does not completely ensure the security of mobile devices, but it makes it difficult for the hackers to hack your device.
2. Keep your Operating System (OS) updated
Always use the latest Operating System available, according to your device. Having the latest OS gives you more secure methods for mobile protection.
3. Strict NO to public Wi-Fi
Using Wi-Fi at public places such as coffee shops, airports, library, etc. is a very convenient and great way to save your phone data usage. But, do you know that this convenience can cost you your identity? Yes, it’s true. These networks are not secure and could easily be hacked by hackers. Other people using this network can hack into your accounts and watch your every move.
They can see what you are doing on your device including your login information and passwords too!
Security in mobile networks is very important. To stay safe, it is advised not to use these networks. If you still require to use these networks, use them smartly and never access apps and websites which require you to log in.
4. Transact through encrypted websites only
Use only encrypted websites for any transaction to ensure online mobile security. Encrypted websites are those which encode the information before sending it. This way, it is difficult for hackers to access it. A secure website is the one having “https://” in the beginning and not just “http://”. Also, make sure that every page begins with https:// and not just the sign-in page.
5. Clean your phone before selling or throwing it
If you want to sell your device or even if you are just throwing it, make sure to completely erase all the apps and information. You can set the default factory settings or reset your phone to avoid leaving any of your information.
6. Secure information stored on your phone
Our day to day activities require us to remember various logins and passwords which is not possible for us. Many of us store them on our phones. But, storing them this way is again very dangerous even if we have a lock on our phone as we know that it is not enough. So, we should always store the information in a password protected app.
7. Use an anti-virus
Always install an anti-virus app on your mobile to secure it from viruses and unauthorised access.
8. Stay away from automatic logins
Saving your login credentials can be very convenient. But remember, it is again an invitation to identity theft in case of stolen phone. Never save your login information and log out of every app and website every time.
9. Treat your phone just like your PC
Just like you discard unsolicited email, links and pop-ups on your PC, similarly, you should remember to do the same with your smartphones.
10. Backup your data
Regularly backup the data on your smartphone so that it can be tracked in case your phone is lost or stolen. You can back up your data to your computer, external storage device or a cloud service.
Don’t think that your smartphone is smart every time because it is not smart to protect itself. Your identity is very important and it cannot be kept at risk due to lack of security in your device. If you think that your phone is at risk, take the appropriate measures for mobile phone security to protect yourself.