Boost Your Mobile Security: 6 Tips

A handful of tips to ensure that your handheld device is as safe as it needs to be.
Posted November 10, 2011

Eric Geier

In today's world, your mobile phone is the epicenter of your computing world. Here are a handful of tips to ensure that your handheld device is as safe as it needs to be.

The more you do on your mobile device, the more you should be concerned about its security. This is especially true if you use it for work. Keep in mind, if your device is configured with your employer’s email or messaging server, they may already be implementing some of the security tips we’re going to discuss.

Tip No. 1 - Choose a mobile OS that supports encryption, oh, and use it: If you are truly concerned about the security of your mobile phone or device you should use a mobile operating system (OS) and device that supports hardware-based encryption, such as Apple’s iOS or RIM’s BlackBerry, for both internal and external storage. This means the data stored on it is protected even from the most advanced hacker. Without encryption it’s possible that someone could recover the data on the device even without your lock pin or password.

Full device encryption on current Android devices is limited and varies between manufactures. Motorola Mobility's business-oriented smartphones offers encryption capabilities on Android 2.3. Android 3.x includes an API to help developers offer encryption on tablets, which some currently implement. And in the next year, we should see Android 4.x tablets and smartphones support encryption. WhisperCore is a third-party encryption solution you may want to also keep your eye on. Beta versions are currently available for Nexus S and Nexus One.

 Tip No. 2 - Set a lock pin or password: Enabling a password, whether it’s called a pin, passcode, or passphrase, is the first line of defense in protecting your privacy and security. It helps prevent others from picking up your phone or device and snooping around if it becomes lost, stolen, or just left unattended. It’s also usually required if encryption is enabled on the device.

If encryption isn’t supported by the OS you should still definitely require yourself to set a password. Though your data can possibly be recovered by determined individuals without them knowing the password, you’ll at least protect it from the causal snoopers.

Read the rest about mobile security at eSecurity Planet.

Tags: mobile, encryption, mobile security

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