Smartphone Security Guide

January 24, 2016

You likely use it multiple times a day, but is it safe and secure? From apps to email to accessing your bank online, here are some of the best ways to secure your smartphone.

How Secure Are Your Apps?

For the same reasons you would use caution when downloading software from the internet, by establishing that the software supplier is a trusted source for instance, you should also use similar caution when downloading apps for a mobile device. One of the first steps you should take is to download security software.

Apps, like Lookout, avast! SecureLine VPN, Find My iPhone, Android Device Manager, LastPass, and 1Password help you secure your data on your mobile device and also scan for malicious code.

These are known-good applications and, in some cases (like Find My iPhone) are released by the manufacturer of the phone or operating system.

Note the permissions that are required before you download and use the app. Some applications will want permissions to see your location, information about phone calls you’ve made or are making, and the ability to read data from your SD card and write information back to it.

Some of these permissions seem daunting or pervasive because they give the app, and the developer, amazing access to your personal data. If a photography app wants access to your phone’s camera, that would be deemed a fair use for instance. However, if a camera app wants to access your microphone and text messages, then you may want to look more into the app provider and establish how trustworthy they are.

Has the App been reviewed by others? Does the App producer have good social signals on social media? Does their product page adequately provide information on how the permissions are utilised by the app and why they are needed?

 

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