When people think of cyber security they often think it applies to just their computers. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Think of how much valuable information is carried on your smartphone and tablet devices. It’s just as important to protect your portable devices as your computer. Take a look at these steps you can implement today to keep your devices safe.
Smartphone and Tablet Passwords and Codes
On all of your portable devices, you should protect them with a password or pin code. As cyber security becomes a necessity rather than a choice, devices have given you more options than ever before to protect your data.
Pin codes – This is the most common way of protecting devices. It’s usually a four digit code that you can set to unlock your device each time. You should avoid simple passcodes such as ‘0000’ and ‘1234’. It may surprise you to learn that you can often create longer six digit pin codes for your devices. You can also use alphanumeric codes which contain a mix of numbers and letters.
Passwords – Passwords are very similar to pin codes but tend to be longer and have a mix of letters and numbers. They should be a minimum of 8 characters and not contain any memorable information.
|Check out our guide on ‘How to create the perfect password.’|
Fingerprints – Lots of new devices contain fingerprint scanners. This is a very secure way of protecting your data but can sometimes be temperamental to use.
Face ID – This is the new wave of cyber security on portable devices. Face ID will take a full scan of your face that can be used to unlock your device. Like fingerprints, these features aren’t always enabled straight away, so check they’re activated.
Have a Disaster Recovery Plan for lost or stolen devices
If the worst happens and you lose your device or stolen, you need a plan to protect your data. All modern devices have applications or web-based tools to help you recover your data and lock devices. These tools will allow you to do the following;
- Track the location of our device.
- Remotely lock access to the device.
- Remotely erase the data stored on the device.
- Retrieve a backup of data stored on the device.
These tools are crucial in being cyber secure. If you run a business, you should make sure all your staff have a disaster recovery plan if their devices are lost or stolen.
Keep your device up to date
You should always be running the latest version of the operating software on your device. That being said you may want to wait a couple of days after the update to check there are no teething problems with the update upon release. Developers don’t release updates for no reason. Even if there doesn’t appear to any changes on the front end, these updates will contain critical ‘under the hood’ security updates.
Keep your apps up to date
Much like your device you should keep your apps up to date. Seeing the number on your app store icon steadily increase can become annoying as it becomes a constant battle to keep the number at zero. These updates are critical and often contain important security updates. Leaving apps without the latest updates is like having an open door on your device. Most systems these days allow for automatic app updates meaning you don’t have to worry about them.
Don’t connect to unknown Wi-Fi hotspots
When connecting to a public Wi-Fi hotspot, you’re taking a considerable security risk. While you may want to browse online while drinking your coffee you don’t know who’s running that hotspot or even if it’s the company/person you think it is. Where you can, you should use your mobile data (3G/4G) for browsing. Modern mobile devices will also allow you to use them as a mobile hotspot and tether other devices such as laptops off them.
These are just a few ways to protect your smartphone and tablet devices. The world of cyber security is ever changing and it’s always important to keep up on the latest trends such as Face ID to keep your data protected. Have any questions on cyber security on portable devices? Feel free to get in touch in the comments below. Don’t forget to check out the cyber security section of our learning centre for all the latest tips and hints on keeping secure.