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July 27, 2016

Top tips for tightening your phone security

Itís hard to imagine what life was like before everyone had a mobile phone. As more and more of our business and personal data is entrusted to those tiny devices, here are some tips for tightening up your own mobile security.

Itís hard to imagine what life was like before everyone had a mobile phone. What did we do when we were ten minutes late? How did we amuse ourselves on long train journeys? How on earth did we manage to measure the quality of our sleep?

Jokes aside, few of us would be without a phone today; our entire lives are inside that little device. Hence itís absolutely crucial that we keep our devices safe. With that in mind, here are our top tips for tightening mobile security:

Use secure connections

Internet safety lesson 101: make sure your WiFi connection is secure, especially if you are using a public one. Itís easy for even the least competent hacker to jump in on what youíve been doing. If you are using a public connection, donít do your internet banking or anything sensitive and remember to log out again afterwards. If possible, log in under guest mode.

Donít keep sensitive information on your phone

If youíre worried someone might steal your novel or see those cheeky beach photos, the safest action is not to save them on your phone in the first place. It might seem easier said than done, but look through your files and decide what youíd be most afraid of seeing in the public arena Ė move as appropriate.

Set up second-layer security

Most of us have a password or PIN to get into our devices and rightly so. Itís a good idea to change your password on a regular basis. Going one step better is to initiate a second layer of security. That might be using a fingerprint scanner or a vault app (into which you can put all your files). Computerworld.com recommends App Lock. This second layer offers that extra peace of mind should you phone ever get taken. And never leave your phone unlocked!

Finally, stop flashing it about!

It sounds obvious, but if people see you at a café, a bar or walking along the street with your fancy new iPhone 6, then youíre making yourself a target for opportunist thieves. Use your device discretely unless you are sure youíre in a Ďsafeí environment. If your phone does get stolen, the thief will have access to a huge amount of personal details, which can be used in any number of horrible ways. Prevention is the best cure, as they say, so put your phone away.

A FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY Ė MY DEVICE IS INVULNERABLE

I often hear people state the apple devices are safe and you donít need secure them, and although itís certainly true they do not have as many threats than Android devices, they certainly are not infallible. A very recent bulletin was issues that demonstrated how apple devices could be compromised using a malformed tiff file, the file sent by either email attachment or as a web download onto the device result in the hackers gaining access to the phone contents. Although Apple have issued a patch for this it does demonstrate that: A) as always patching is one of best ways to keep your system protected, and b) no device should ever be considered invulnerable.

WANT TO DO MORE?

If you are looking to do more to secure mobile devices then consider using a mobile management solution or a mobile device security solution. These can segment and safeguard company data stored on mobile devices supporting a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy. As well as ensuring your usage and security policies are implemented consistently with central administration. Some of the typical features they provide are: anti-virus for mobile devices, enforce PIN usage, remotely wipe, and encryption of data. Please call or email us: info@cstl.com or tel 020 7621 7836 for information on the options available.

CST awarded ĎCyber Essentials Plusí certification body status - we can help you achieve Cyber Defence recognition.
Cyber Essentials aims to help organisations implement fundamental levels of protection against cyber-attack, demonstrating to their customers that they take cyber security seriously. We can assist with the advice, and can undertake assessment to award you Cyber Essentials plus certification.