With smartphones and tablets becoming as ubiquitous in the workplace as laptops and PCs, mobile devices have become a popular target for hackers looking to steal sensitive personal and business data. If you have not yet implemented cyber security standards for your team’s mobile devices, here are a few basic guidelines to get started.
Set a Strong Password
Just like you wouldn’t leave the front door to your home unlocked, your devices should never be without a passcode or other secure login mechanism. A password acts as an initial barrier against potential thieves or hackers. If your device requires a numerical PIN, opt for the longer 6 digit PIN option, and make sure the number combination is not easily guessed. If your device utilizes fingerprint or facial recognition, take advantage of these enhanced security features.
Keep Apps and OS Software Up-To-Date
Most app and OS updates contain patches and bug fixes designed to make your devices more secure. Installing updates as soon as they are available is recommended – delaying the update can unnecessarily leave your device open to known security risks.
Only Download Apps from Official Stores
When it comes to installing apps on your device, only download from official stores (i.e.: the App Store for iPhone users, and the Google Play Store for Android users). Stick to well-known apps, avoid downloads from any unknown links, and pay attention to ratings. Since official stores have strict app standards, this will greatly reduce the possibility of downloading a malicious app disguised as a legitimate one.
Check the Permission Settings of Your Apps
Many apps you download will ask for permission to access your data (contacts, location, photos, etc.) Some of these permissions also give access to hardware controls, such as those in your phone’s camera or microphone. If a malicious app gains access to these controls, they could serve as a gateway for hackers.
To manage what apps can access on your device, follow the steps below:
- For iOS: Go to ‘Settings’ > ‘Privacy’ to view the access level of your installed apps. If you tap ‘Camera,’ for example, you will see all of the apps that have access to your phone’s camera. You can turn off access for any apps by tapping the toggle button on this screen.
- For Android: Navigate to ‘Settings’ > ‘Apps,’ select an app, and tap ‘Permissions.’ From this screen, you can adjust each app’s individual access settings for your device.
These four basic security measures are a great first step in keeping your devices – and your info – safe; solutions like Mobile Device Management can provide an extra layer of protection. Interested in learning more about ways to safeguard your business against hackers and cyber threats? Check out our Security Solutions or give us a call today!