The day you started using an Android phone, you made yourself an attractive target for hackers and snoops. There is just so much precious information about your life that gets stored on your Android phone that it makes sense to go the extra mile to keep it from falling into the hands of unfriendly people.
Of course, this also includes the information that flows between your smartphone and the internet.
As it so happens, there are quite a few ways in which you can make sure that the wrong kind of people aren’t able to sneak into your Android phone to steal your data or intercept it while it’s in transit. Let’s quickly run through the options.
Use VPN Apps For Online Security Of Data
You may not realize it yet, but your bank information, social security number, and other sensitive information are of immense value to hackers. The latter can use it to deal you a severe financial blow, put your security at risk, or sell the stolen information on the black-market.
Hackers mostly act while your data is in motion as at that precise moment, your data is in its most vulnerable state. This risk is particularly high when you’re connected to an unsecured public Wi-Fi, e.g. at a café or airport.
A very simple solution to this looming threat exists in the form of VPN apps. By installing a paid or even free VPN app, available in abundance on Google Play Store, on your Android phone, you can securely connect to the internet even through an unsecured Wi-Fi connection. [pullquote]All the data that is sent or received through the VPN connection is encrypted, making it nearly impossible for hackers to get their hands on your sensitive information.[/pullquote]
Encrypt Your Android Phone To Protect Sensitive Files
If you don’t want thieves, a nosey partner, snooping friends, untrustworthy colleagues, or even the government authorities going through the messages, emails, chats, pictures, and videos stored on your Android phone while your back is turned, then you’d better encrypt your device.
Although there are plenty of third-party encryption apps available for Android, there’s really no need for you to turn to them. Google has made it a mandatory built-in feature since the Marshmallow update. You’ll still need to activate it manually to benefit from it though.
Activating encryption on an Android phone is a piece of cake. Here’s what you need to do:
- Charge your phone’s battery to above 80% and keep the charger plugged in during encryption
- Head over to Settings > General > Security > Encrypt phone
- Tap Encrypt phone and enter your PIN or swipe pattern to begin encryption
- After the encryption is complete, your phone will restart. Enter your PIN or swipe pattern to access your data
You can also encrypt SD card storage by selecting the relevant option from the Security screen.
Install Latest Updates The Moment They Become Available
Google keeps rolling out new updates, big and small, for its mobile OS to fix bugs and resolve other known issues. You’d be exposing your device and data to risks unnecessarily by not installing firmware updates the moment they become available.
You may have a lot of pending tasks that require your immediate attention, or maybe you may not be feeling too keen on making your phone inactive for a while. However, the delay, or rather negligence, can cost you big time.
Always make it a point to install the latest firmware update as soon as it rolls out for your device so that it may be protected from the known vulnerabilities at least.
The Tried And Trusted Lock Screen Defense
Sometimes it’s the simplest of things that can make the strongest of impacts. This certainly stands true for lock screens.
By activating auto lock screen and setting a secure password, one that even your partner or closest friend wouldn’t be able to guess, you’ll be making sure that no one would be able to sneak into your device behind your back.
With such a reliable defense available in the form of the lock screen, it’s almost maddening to see so many Android users undermining its effectiveness and failing to benefit from it.