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5 Steps You Can Take To Make Sure You Have a Secure Smartphone

You might like to think that what happens on your smartphone isn’t seen by anyone except, well, whoever is supposed to use the phone. However, hackers and scammers prey on handsets left lax in their security.

This is why you ought to take a number of measures – such as those detailed below – in order to tighten up your smartphone’s security as far as practically possible.

It can be hard to keep up with the latest tech and the many methods of security and safety. But by taking the time to stay informed, you can make sure that your device is locked down and safe from potentially dangerous intruders.

Buy a Smartphone Model Renowned for Security

You can indeed put yourself on the front foot by investing in a smartphone already equipped with many features potentially instrumental to your cybersecurity. The operating system that runs as standard on iPhones, iOS, comes with plentiful such features highlighted by IT Pro.

Simply switching to an iPhone could enable you to strengthen your online privacy, such as by keeping your location and camera use private – but there are many other secure mobile phones you could also consider.

Keep Your Phone’s Operating System Updated

Another good reason for especially security-conscious people to pick up an iPhone is that, at least if it was released relatively recently, it should be in line for several years of software updates – including security fixes. However, many Android handsets also allow users to regularly update the onboard OS for years.

A recent data breach has revealed that many users are still running outdated versions of the Android operating system. This is a big problem in terms of security since many known vulnerabilities have been patched in newer versions.

According to figures shared by MUO, you can expect iOS devices to get four to five years of software updates, while Android phones typically provide three to four years of updates.

Update Your Browser, Banking, and Office Apps, Too

Fortunately, your particular phone might update all of these automatically anyway. If it doesn’t, make sure you keep on top of manual updates for these apps.

Otherwise, hackers could exploit known security vulnerabilities in the software – potentially leading sensitive data to fall into these attackers’ hands.

While the latest OS is important, you should also make sure that the Essential apps you use on a daily basis are up-to-date. These include your browser, office suite, email, and banking apps.

Have an iPhone? Then turn on USB Restricted Mode

If you often charge this iPhone in a public place (think a coffee shop), on a plane, or at work, you should remember to turn on what Fox News calls USB Restricted Mode. In doing this, you would be helping to protect against “juice jacking”, where malware can be put onto a device via the USB charging port.

To activate USB Restricted Mode, go into the Passcode section of the Settings app, enter your passcode and, in the section “Allow Access When Locked”, toggle the “USB Accessories” option off.

The feature will be activated on the device if it has not been used for more than one hour. When the feature is activated, the iPhone will not work with the Lightning cable after the one-hour mark. Instead, the iPhone will work with the Lightning cable only when it is plugged into a power adapter.

Also, Enable Erase Data on That iPhone

In doing so, you would ensure that, if someone makes ten failed attempts to accurately enter your passcode on the phone’s Lock Screen, all of the data on this device will be automatically wiped.

To switch on the Erase Data setting, turn again to the Settings app’s Passcode section, type in your passcode, and, at the bottom of the menu that subsequently appears, toggle the “Erase Data” button to the right.

This passcode is an additional layer of security that makes it harder for someone to access your phone if they find it or get their hands on it. Of course, if you’re the one holding your phone, you are the only one that should be able to access it, and the passcode is supposed to keep that from happening.

This is a great feature that you should definitely enable on your phone to protect your privacy. This feature is called Erase Data, and it can be found in the iPhone’s Settings app.

However, before doing all of this, you should also make sure you are regularly backing up all of the data on that phone – whether manually or automatically – in case this data is indeed erased.

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