Simple smartphone safety tips
(NC)—The alarm goes off. You hit snooze again, trying to grab that tiny bit of shut-eye for the last time. And then you wake up with a start, as you realize that you are about to be late for work. Frantically, you spring out of bed, run to the shower, brush your teeth, grab your desperately needed cup of java and head out the door — made it. On the bus, you reach for your smartphone to get a head start on your day. To your despair, it is nowhere to be found. You feel your face begin to flush and you wonder how you are ever going to make it through the day.
Sound familiar? Let's face it, we are constantly plugged into our mobile devices. They have become such an essential part of our lives that we feel lost without them.
In a relatively short time, cell phones have evolved from a traditional phone to something that now has most of the features found on a personal computer. We store email, social accounts, photos and contact information; we access mobile banking sites, browse the Internet, use apps and more.
With all of these bells and whistles at our fingertips, protecting our device is more important than ever. You can stay clear of potential threats by following these tips:
• Password-protect your phone - All mobile devices can be locked with a password or a number code. It's a very simple step that can protect your personal information in the event that your device is ever lost or stolen.
• Enable your password auto-lock so it always locks after a short period of time of inactivity.
• Avoid connecting to unknown or non-password protected Wi-Fi networks, even if they are private. An unsecured wireless network can compromise your information, including your contact list, as well as give someone else use of your data plan.
• Think carefully about what you absolutely need to store on your mobile device, and erase everything else. If it's lost or stolen, you could be placing personal information in someone else's hands.
• Think before you “app”. Understand what information an app could access and share before you download it.
• Use a phone finder: Turn on the service or use a trusted app that helps you find your phone, which will let you lock or erase its data if it's lost or stolen.
Being mobile is a convenience that many of us can't live without. Protect while you connect. More information is available online at GetCyberSafe.ca.
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