6 ways to secure your mobile phone

Phone

It’s 2011 and there are now more phones in the world than computers. Every day, more of these phones become smartphones AKA portable computers. Unfortunately, if your phone can browse the web and check email, you will be targeted by some of the same  malicious attacks and scams that go after your PC.

Here are a few basic tips from the F-Secure Labs on how to secure your mobile phone.

  1. Keep your system updated
    An updated mobile operating system allows you to enjoy the latest and greatest features and while protecting your information. Get rid of security holes or vulnerabilities by maintaining updated software on both your PC and your smartphone.
  2. Install a security application
    As your mobile device functions more like a mini computer, it becomes a more attractive target for hackers or thieves. A reliable security app safeguards your data, protect against threats and locate your lost or stolen phone. Here’s a quick video about our F-Secure Mobile Security, in case you’re interested.
  3. Watch where you click and land
    The mobile threats you’re most likely to face are scams and phishing attacks that will attempt to steal credit card information. Social engineering methods would be used to lure you into clicking on malicious links. Always check to see if a website starts with “https” before you enter sensitive information.
  4. Avoid shopping or banking on a public network
    Keep in mind that the public Wi-Fi that your phone is connected to might not be secure. Limit your activity to browsing and avoid committing any transaction that involves your account information.
  5. Get applications from trusted source
    Part of the fun in having a smartphone is having an app for everything. There are plenty of applications out there, and some are offered through independent, unmonitored channels. Stick to app stores when you can. If you’re downloading an app from a third party, do a little research to make sure the app is reputable.
  6. Make it a habit to check each app’s data access on your phone
    Some applications may have access to your data or personal information. Be wary of the access that is outside of the scope or purpose of the applications. A game application doesn’t need access to SMS (read, write and send), calling, phonebook entries and system files. If game wants all the access, get a little suspicious. If you have any doubt about an application, do not install it.

Mobile security is a new concept for many people. So let us know what you want to know about the topic in the comments of this post.

Cheers,

Jason

CC image by Jacob Bøtter

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16 Comments

When traveling or on the vehicle avoid holding your mobile phone and detect the next window, you can be an appropriate goal in a sudden crash and the attacks of support. You can use hands-free kit, if your phone model is fitted.

Hi Jason,
Thanks for the security tips. Some of them were new for me. I used to browse internet, download mp3 music, social network sites. Is it secure to use mobile banking with same? As I have already download the icon (I-mobile of Icici bank)?

Thanks,
Pankaj

It would be very good if F-Secure could sell a product that would let me install AB and internet security software across all the platforms my household uses. That is computers (PC and laptop), two smartphones and an iPad. A one stop shop would be very helpful in this respect, at a sizeable discount for buying multiple copies.

I totally agree about a version that would cover both mobiles and computers and have mentioned this to F-Secure on quite a few occasions.

It must have been at 1.5-2 years ago and they informed me they would look into it, but guess they decided not to do it. I have 2 PC’s and a smartphone and would love to have them all protected, but due to being disabled and not able to work. I can manage to get F-Secure Internet security (IS), but cannot afford the mobile security and cannot think of a reason why the 3 protected items in Internet Security have to be all PC’s, as a mixture of mobile, PC and Ipad would be more helpful to customers.

After all if the customers are happy, they would come back, year after year and this idea might just help F-Secure get more customers and keep more people/items protected.

A customer who has use F-Secure for around 6 years

There’s one problem with 1) I’ve found with my old Nokia’s and current Android; you can’t keep your system up-to-date. In the case of my Nokia’s I had to wait for the provider to attach their crapware to it before releasing the update and in the case of Android, I’m waiting for HTC to update their sense UI for 2.3.

Also from what I’m aware, you’re limited to what security you can put onto iPhone – but then Apple are very strict what gets into the App Store, so you should be pretty well protected.

Of course you could have routed your Android/iPhone to put whatever you want on, but if you’ve done that – you should know what you’re doing and take care with where you get the apps!

I’m very pleased to discover this site. I want to to thank you for ones time for this wonderful read!! I definitely appreciated every little bit of it and i also have you saved to fav to look at new stuff in your site.

I used to be suggested this web site by my cousin. I am now not positive whether or not this put up is written through him as no one else understand such precise about my trouble. You are incredible! Thank you!

Thanks for the compliment! We try to make some of these technical issues easier for people to understand so that they can get more from their mobile phones and computers!

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