Data being called the oil of the modern world, the implication is obvious- your data is valuable. This makes it even more important to ensure that your data remains secure and is shared only with those you want to share it with.

To that end, here are the best tips on how to protect mobile data.

Use a security app

Regardless of how secure the manufacturer has made your phone, the fact remains that once it’s hooked to the internet, it becomes vulnerable to discreet attacks aimed at accessing your data.

Which is why security apps are a very good idea and an even better tool in your fight for data privacy.

The good news is that there are quite a few robust anti-malware or anti-virus apps which would work on different types of devices and operating systems.

You could also consider installing a firewall app.

With such an app running, you could be sure that none of the apps in your phone receive or broadcast data that they shouldn’t.

That’s one of the best ways to protect mobile data while you’re online.

As much as possible, use private networks

Public wi-fi networks are becoming increasingly common, thanks to our near-perennial need of staying connected to the internet.

These networks, no doubt, are convenient- letting you and look up an address online or timing for an event which you suddenly had the idea to attend.

But the fact remains that public networks are..well, public. It will be foolhardy to imagine that public networks would have the same security provisions as a private network.

The prudent move would be to avoid using public networks completely.

If at all you need to use such a network, make sure that you don’t use an app or utility which would have you entering sensitive information-like bank account number- into it.

Better keep to private networks exclusively as it’s a meaningful way to  improve your mobile phone security. 

Download apps from designated app stores

There’s a fair chance that your phone allows you to download and install apps from just about any website, and not just the designated app store.

While that may sound like an awfully nice thing for your phone’s manufacturer to have done, it’s still a good idea to stick to the official app stores while downloading apps. 

Malware is the villain you should be wary of when it comes to apps.

Apps containing malware, or maybe malware disguised as an app have a higher chance of getting into your phone through unverified websites.

Some of these malwares could copy sensitive data- including pictures- and relay them to a cloud to which they are connected. 

So, for improved mobile phone security, it’s always a good practice to get your apps from reliable app stores.

Give optimal access permission to apps 

As important as getting apps from the proper channels is allowing the apps only the necessary amount of access to the data in your phone.

It’s common enough for apps to need access to the camera, the GPS location and even your files, depending on the functionalities for which these apps are used. 

While it’s practical for apps to access certain parts and features of your phone, there are certain aspects which some apps would never need to access but would still ask your permission for.

For instance, a simple scanner app has no need to access your contact list. So, if such an app asks for the permission to access the contacts list, it should be considered as a red flag and you should deny the app that permission.

Some app-makers make money by selling your data to third-party advertisers, which is why some apps make what appear to be baffling access requests.

Keep that in mind the next time you install an app in your phone, for the sake of stronger mobile phone security.

Checklist to protect mobile data

  • Keep the phone’s OS and frequently used apps always updated
  • Keep your phone’s Bluetooth turned off while it’s not being used
  • Block sources from which you get frequent emails and messages that look like spam
  • Always keep a backup of your important data- either on cloud or in a separate device unconnected to the Internet.

Dos and Don’ts  for protecting mobile data

DO

DON’T

Use 2 factor authentication (Set up two-step authentication methods- like password and thumb impression for sensitive files in your phone)

Use simple passwords like your name or birthdate.

Visit websites that are trustworthy

Provide sensitive information on a website unless you think it’s necessary.

Use authorized banking apps for financial transfers etc.

Store highly sensitive information like bank account details in your phone as much as possible.

With our lives being increasingly lived online- particularly on our phones, we should be extra-cautious about our data privacy online, more so than ever before. Thankfully, with the right precautionary measures, we could steer clear of data breaches.

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P.S: The content provided here is meant as general information and shouldn’t be considered as security advice.