Our mobile devices are becoming and extensions of ourselves. According to research by research by Morgan Stanley, mobile transactions is set to explode in the few years (2014 UP). This is due to the rise of mobile technology which will overtake the desktop in 2014. Even as I write this.. I know that these words are already becoming obsolete. But the time you read this it will have already happened.
It is more important than ever to protect our data and privacy on our mobile devices. Here are a few tips on how you can.
1. Remove the Subscriber Identity Module/ SIM card – The SIM card does not store photos, address information (not yet anyway). But it does contain information needed to access your cell network data. As well as text messages, phone contacts with related information like names and numbers and addresses you attached to your contacts, history of calls (dates and times). It can also contain important data regarding your location. All of this vital information makes it great for police investigations and forensics, but can also be used to get information that you believe should be private.
With your subscriber identity module (SIM), anyone can can get your information even without your phone. They can plug it into the applicable phone and access your data as if they are you. If you truly want to make sure no one gets transactions that you have made on your mobile device, you should take out the SIM card. If your data is truly valuable (more valuable than your phone), then take out the SIM and put it in your wallet. Lastly, the SIM itself has a PIN code you can put in.
2. Phone security code – Whether its Android Screen Lock or iPhone Passcode, this should be a “no brainer” but is so easy to NOT do because you don’t want to go through the hassle of tapping the PIN code while driving (which you should NEVER do). But just imagine leaving your cell phone somewhere then suddenly realizing that not ONLY have you lost your phone, but that phone has direct access into your email account and the phone has NO security code. Create a phone security code to prevent anyone from spying your phone.
3. Delete history – Do you really NEED your history? Someone else might, so its best to clean it up often. Delete call logs, SMS logs, SKYPE logs, oovoo, viber, imessage, snapchat, every like of log you can think of. Delete old pictures, emails everything. If you don’t need it, delete it. In fact, if you can, turn off the history so it does not store anything.
4. No automatic email log in – I know its convenient, but if you don’t have constant control over your phone, its best NOT to allow it to automatically access your accounts. If you MUST have automatic access, make sure you have Auto Lock on your screen and a passcode.
5. Auto-Lock/Screen Lock – Pin codes, passcodes and screen locks are not as effective if you don’t have your phone automatically lock after a certain number of minutes. I suggest 5 minutes. But its up to you.