EPCU MONEY SMARTS
5 Ways to Protect Your Smartphone
Adoption of smartphones in the United States is ever on the increase. As we celebrate the premier of our EPCU Mobile Application we want to share with members some best practices for keeping your data safe and secure when accessing your accounts via a smart phone.
- Lock it - Most smart phones are equipped with the ability to set a passcode for locking and unlocking the phone. If you accidentally lose your smartphone or are the victim of a theft, an unlocked smartphone gives any passerby or thief complete access to every piece of data you access. Locking it can prohibit others from accessing your accounts or personal data.
- Download Trustworthy Apps – While one of the great things about smartphones is that you have access to countless free and inexpensive apps, be wary of those you choose to download. By nature, apps require some level of access to the data you store on your phone, which means some apps could maliciously acquire access to secure areas and data they shouldn't need. So before you go and download an app, read the reviews and research the app itself to determine if it is truly legit, and consider mobile security software.
- Update When Prompted- Ignoring updates to your phones software can leave your phone incredibly vulnerable. Android and iOS developers continue in their efforts to close loopholes and potential exploits with these upgrades. If you get behind on an update, odds are that you could be leaving your smartphone open for attack.
- Turn Off GPS, Bluetooth and Wireless - When you aren't using the GPS, Bluetooth and wireless features of your smartphone, you should consider disabling them. Not only are they constantly draining your battery, they can also be routes malicious content will access. Before you access a public wireless network, think about what other devices could potentially access your device through it.
- Prepare for the Worst with Remote Wipes - If someone were to steal your smartphone, what information would they have access to? What damage could they inflict upon your bank account, credit score, and social networking accounts? If your answer is "a lot," then you should consider putting a remote wipe app in place. A remote wipe app would allow you to simply turn on your computer, access your remote wipe settings via a web browser, and then this software will remotely access your phone via a wireless or carrier signal and return the smartphone to its factory settings, completely erasing all personal information affiliated with you.