I don’t know what I would do without my smart phone. I use it to check traffic so I can find the best route in the morning. I use GPS to go to my meetings, no more printed maps. I use it to check-in for flights and show my e-ticket. I don’t even carry cash or credit cards because it’s all on my phone, including person-to-person money transfers using Venmo.
Everything is available to us on our phones, which is very convenient, but also risky.
When you’re using an app on your smart phone, be aware you are connected and at risk of being hacked. You share a lot about you and your behaviors through your smart phone. So here are some tips to keep in mind when using your phone:
- Use a PIN to unlock your device. In fact, biometrics are probably safer so it may be time for you to consider upgrading your device with one that uses fingerprint or a facial recognition to unlock your smart phone.
- In public places such as an airport or coffee shop, be careful and mindful of choosing “Free WiFi” because there may be people nearby who are literally “listening” and waiting for you to enter your passwords onto your Virtual Private Network, or onto an unsecure website.
- If you need to get connected in public places, use your cellular service instead of the Free WiFi.
- Bluetooth is not safe from cyber attacks either, so only pair with trusted devices and turn off connectivity if you suspect you’re in a public place where cyber security could be an issue.
- Be wary of apps you download on your phone. Remove it if you don’t need it and don’t install it if it isn’t from a trusted source.
All this “connectivity” and convenience comes with more responsibility. Just like our physical security, we need to be mindful of the things around us (i.e. our phones) that could pose a potential threat.