Freedom Credit Union offers mobile banking to its membership and here are some very prudent security practices for SmartPhone users.
The credit union offered mobile banking to its membership last week and here are some very prudent security practices for SmartPhone users.
Lock Your SmartPhone – Set up a screen lock so the phone cannot be accessed or used without a password. Use a real alphanumeric password (not a 4-digit PIN) and ensure the screen is set to lock automatically after 1 to 5 minutes of being idle.
- Don’t Leave Your SmartPhone Unattended – Don’t leave your SmartPhone sitting around in public spaces…it’s easy to do. Put it in your coat, pocket, briefcase, purse, wherever it can be out of view when not in use.
- Don’t Give Your SmartPhone to Strangers – If someone needs to make an emergency call home and asks to use your phone…don’t. Rather than give the person your phone, make the call for them and put it on speaker.
- Keep Your SmartPhone Up-To-Date – You know those system updates you’ve been ignoring for a while? Install them. Most SmartPhone system updates include enhancements to device security. When updates are provided by the manufacturer, install them.
- Use ‘Find My iPhone’ or Similar Service – There are free, very easy SmartPhone tools available that allow the tracking and wiping service for Androids, iOS, Windows and Blackberry phones. These tools and services allow the user to lock, track, or wipe their SmartPhone remotely if lost. This not only protects your personal data, but it could help you recover a lost or stolen device.
- Don’t Download Apps from Untrusted Sources – Do not enable the “non-market Apps” setting on your SmartPhone. These types of Apps are riddled with vulnerabilities. Only install Apps from the SmartPhone manufacturer’s approved online App Store.
- Do ‘SmartPhone Apps’ Due Diligence – Do your homework! Read the ‘Permissions’ screen when you download and install new Apps to your SmartPhone. Many Apps will let you know that they are accessing your location, call history, contacts, and other personal data. Realize too when these Apps deliver your SmartPhone information to other third-party companies for other uses.
- Watch Those Attachments! – Be careful about opening attachments sent to your SmartPhone by people you don’t know. Many attachments are used by hackers to deploy malicious software and viruses.
- Encrypt SmartPhone Data – Most new SmartPhones make it relatively simple to encrypt the contents of the phone. This ensures that even if the phone does fall into the wrong hands and is accessed because the screen lock was bypassed, some level of protection still remains for your personal data.
- Your SmartPhone is a Small Computer! – Don’t think of your SmartPhone as being “just a phone.” It is a small computer with a substantial storage of personal information in addition to phone numbers and contacts.