Your mobile device stores a lot of personal information about you. Add Web browsing, mobile apps, and financial transactions to the mix, and a world of potential security risks opens up. We've got the tips to help safeguard your information.
Set Passwords and Enable Security Features
An easy way to start protecting your information is to set a lock code and password. This prevents others from accessing contact lists, stored login information from recent website visits, and more. Depending on how often you use your cell phone or tablet, you'll want to set the 'lock time' appropriately. You'll also want to see if your device has an encryption feature and if the device supports anti-virus software.
Check Your Browser's Security
Before you submit any personal information, you'll want to make sure you've taken a few precautions. Check for a padlock symbol and "https" in your browser's address bar. The "s," which stands for "secure," and the padlock let you know that your browser will encrypt any personal information you submit online. When it comes to Wi-Fi connections, limit what personal information you submit. Try to hold off on making financial transactions or using any websites that require a login and password until you know you're on a secure connection.
Only Store What You Need
Cell phones and tablet computers store your information and history just like desktop and laptop computers do. This means when you browse the Web, information is saved for easy retrieval next time, including credit card information used for quick purchases through apps. Remember to clear your device's cache and history when you're finished. This deletes saved information in cookies and makes passwords and other personal information inaccessible to others. Check your security settings as well as Internet browsing settings on your mobile device to clear stored information and set the level of security you are comfortable with.
Take Caution When Installing Apps
Before downloading and installing an app, make sure you have a credible, official version of the app you want. Phony apps may appear to be credible but may contain viruses that pose a risk to your device. And, before you agree to download an app, take note of what types of information it can access (e.g., your contact list, location, browsing history).
Think Before You Click or Tap
When it comes to receiving texts, emails, and other messages, take caution before responding. Scammers—people that try to deceive you for fraudulent purposes—have made their way into the mobile world, hoping to gain any personal information they can. To help prevent this, always think before you click, tap, or respond!