According to Wikipedia “Malware, short for malicious (or malevolent) software, is software used or programmed by attackers to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, or gain access to private computer systems”. We know about malware attacks on our desktop or laptop computers. But due to the advancement of mobile technology, our smartphones also have become a potential target for these kind of attacks. Our smartphone might contain sensitive information like password, credit or debit card information and things like that. So a successful malware could potentially rob you without even giving you a hint.
Smartphones is a personal device. It contains personal and formal information. But when in wrong hands, these information can be accessed and misused. We should therefore do something to prevent this from happening. There is a very simple way to tackle this, we can password protect our phones. Most of the modern phones have this facility.
If you are using an iOS device you can enable your password setting by heading over to General and then Passcode Lock. Set a password which consists of a alphanumeric combination which might be difficult to crack. It also suggested not to use dictionary words as these words are easily cracked down
If you are using a Android Device, you can head over to settings > security and then select the password alternatives. You can use a pattern lock, password or a PIN code. There might be other options depending upon your smartphone.
Never visit any links telling you that you won a lottery or prize as these links might be a Phishing page. Phishing page are websites which are a copy of a website which asks for username and password such as Google, when you enter the details, the information then gets forwarded to the hackers. Just remove the message from your phone and you are done.
WiFi is also an important and a potential entrance point for the bad people. I would always recommend you not to use WiFi in an insecure area. You can use it on Airports and such place of importance but don’t use any WiFi hotspots you find in public areas. Doing so will make your device vulnerable for data theft. You might not even realise the loss of data until something disastrous happens.
Lets now talk about apps. The huge variety of apps is one of the reasons why the smartphone market is what it is today. Apps are fun right? But it gets into a scary nightmare when it tries to steal your personal data. While apps on Google Play Store or App Store are potentially safe places to download apps. Things might get worse if you download the wrong app. There are things that you should consider before downloading an app. The app may look very promising and attractive but you should always check for the permission it is asking for. Always look out for strange permissions, for example a photo viewing app should never ask for permission of reading your SMS or MMS. If it does, don’t install the app and report it so that Google can look at it and remove it if it violates the T&C.
So these were some tips from my side on how to keep your smartphone safe from attacks and malwares. If you have any tips to share, please leave a comment below.