Top tips to help you protect your mobile devices

1 Lock your smartphone/tablet

Restrict access to your phone by using a pin, password, complex swipe or other option. If it gets lost or stolen it’ll be more difficult for someone to access your information on it. Check the settings and enable automatic screen locking after several minutes of non-use.

2 Install software that lets you find/lock/wipe/disable your device

Many smartphones come with easy options to help you locate your device, flash up a message on screen to anyone finding it or to activate a loud noise to aid recovery or deter a thief. Or you could consider a stand-alone app.

3 Install anti-virus software

Every device you connect to the internet needs protecting from viruses and malware.

4 Keep up with the updates

If it’s an option turn on automatic updates so that you don’t forget. We’d recommend that you apply operating system updates when they’re made available.

5 Be cautious about the apps you install

It’s best to stick with the official marketplaces. Be wary about permissions requested during the installation process – does that free app really need to be able to read/send text messages or access your camera?

6 Backup your device regularly

Your mobile device will inevitably end up holding lots of data. Good housekeeping is recommended – you should routinely remove data that doesn’t need to be kept on your phone and back up what does.

7 Be wary of free Wi-Fi

Stick with trusted data connections or your home Wi-Fi for sensitive activities like banking transactions and purchases – and stick to secure sites – look out for https:// in the address bar, and check the padlock on the stats bar (click or double click on it to see details of the site’s security).

8 Don’t click on links (or open files) you weren’t expecting

Delete text spam – avoid responding to lottery or competition messages or clicking on links they include to strange looking websites.  If you read your personal or business emails on your phone keep a look out for phishing messages.

9 Be alert to your smartphone behaving oddly

  • Check your bills to see if text messages (especially to premium rate or overseas numbers) – are being sent without you knowing about it
  • High data usage might point to a problem with your phone or an app you’ve installed
  • If the battery is draining rapidly check what apps or processes are running in the background in case anything is going on that you weren’t expecting

10 Erase personal info before reselling/recycling

If you’re thinking of selling or recycling your smartphone delete all apps and related data before securely erasing personal information. iPhone owners can use Apple’s factory reset to do this, Android and Windows Phone owners have similar options.

For more tips and information on staying safe online see: –

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