Protecting Your Mobile Device
There are tons of mobile devices available today offering a variety of features that allows us to stay connected and conduct our business activities while away from the office. With our smart phones or tablets, we are able to access email, create and edit documents, download files from the web, access our company VPN and be productive remotely in many other ways that were impossible a few short years ago.
With so much information on hand at all times, it is important to ask yourself how secure is the information on my smart phone? Many of you already may have settings and tools in place to ensure your information will be secure, but here are a few tips to consider implementing that may guarantee the security of your smart phone.
- Lock the device. Nearly every mobile device can be locked down, requiring a password to access it. There are even some phones that will wipe out data after a pre-set number of failed log-in attempts occur. Use the lock settings; they will keep your information private.
- Minimize the data stored on your device. Making a few edits on a document while traveling is fine, but don’t use the device for long-term storage of data. If it’s too sensitive to lose, you shouldn’t store it on your phone.
- Add a mobile-protection application. A Find-me service allows you to track, wipe and lock your phone if the device is lost.
- Encrypt your network data. Enable the virtual private network (VPN), even if you are not accessing company resources. While typically available for larger enterprises, SMBs can purchase a VPN-ready router or server that isn’t too costly.
- Encrypt your email transmissions. By using POP3S, IMAPS or SMTPS you will be further protecting log-in credentials and email messages.
- Do not store user names and password information in contacts or notes. Syncing your phone to Outlook for similar application will automatically synchronize any information you have in contacts or notes. Do not store user names, passwords, account numbers or any other sensitive information in these note fields.
Unfortunately none of these tips guarantees 100% protection from unauthorized access to your mobile device’s information, but since these devices are an integral part of our daily lives, following these simple steps can help reduce potential risks.