Mobile devices have become an integral part of our lives. We rely on our devices on a daily basis to do our work, communicate with friends and family, manage social media, shop, navigate, watch TV and movies, surf the internet and even do our banking. Keep in mind that while our mobile devices are a window to the world, they are also a window to much of our personal information. In many instances, our mobile devices contain our passwords, address, access to our social media and bank accounts, as well as other personal information.
So what can you do to protect your mobile device and keep your private information safe? Consider these tips:
1. Use the passcode lock. Many mobile devices have some sort of passcode lock (numerical code, fingerprint, etc.). This security feature can make it more difficult for thieves to access your personal information if your device is lost or stolen.
2. Log out completely. When you finish a mobile banking session, be sure to log completely out of your account.
3. Protect your phone from viruses. Just like you protect your computer, protect your devices from viruses and malicious software by installing mobile security software.
4. Use caution when downloading apps. Apps can contain malicious software, worms and viruses. Beware of apps that ask for unnecessary “permissions.” Before downloading, read reviews and do additional research on any app that appears suspicious.
5. Download the updates. Often times, the updates for your mobile devices and their apps come with improved security features. Check for any updates on a regular basis.
6. Avoid storing sensitive information. Saving information like passwords, your social security number or your home address in your mobile device can be dangerous if your device was to be lost or stolen.
7. Keep your financial institution notified. If you change your phone number or your device is lost or stolen, be sure to let your financial institution know. Otherwise, they may continue sending SMS notifications to your old phone number or lost/stolen device.
8. Be aware of “shoulder surfers.” The most basic form of information theft is observation. Be aware of your surroundings especially when you’re entering sensitive information into your mobile device.
9. Clear your mobile device. If you donate, sell or trade your mobile device, be sure to wipe it of all personal information by following the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software allows you to wipe your device remotely if it is lost or stolen.
10. Beware of mobile phishing. Avoid opening links and attachments in emails and texts, especially from senders you don’t recognize. Also, be wary of ads (not from your security provider) claiming that your device is infected.
11. Be careful with public Wi-Fi. Public connections aren’t always secure. Avoid performing banking (or other sensitive) transactions on a public network. If you need to access your bank account, try disabling the Wi-Fi. Switching to your mobile network for the duration of your online banking session can improve security.
12. Report any suspected fraud to your bank immediately. If you believe your mobile device has been compromised, notify your bank right away. They can help you reset and secure your online banking information.
We want to hear from you!
What tips do you recommend to help keep mobile devices secure?