You’ve probably read a lot about hackers and how to protect your computer, but for some reason, most people do not care much about smartphone security. Maybe because it’s not like a traditional hard drive where you store all your documents, images, videos, etc. But today’s hyperactive smartphone users store a lot of information that is quite sensitive and that others, like hackers, like to enjoy while you is browsing public WiFi networks.
Fortunately, smartphone security is gaining momentum and there are a few things you can do to ensure the security of your device, especially during a formatting process. So, let’s go to security tips to format the phone.
How to format the cell phone and maintain security with access codes?
Whether you have an Android phone or an iPhone, you can prevent access to your device by adding an access code or a blocking pattern. This simple security measure can prevent sensitive information from being viewed by others. This is especially important if you have a bunch of applications installed where personal data is stored as financial applications, journal applications, notebooks, documents, and so on. In some of these applications you can add a specific password for this application, which I always do beyond the password to protect the home screen.
The home screen password is important because many of the email applications do not even have the option of encrypting your email. Emails can contain a lot of private information, and since most people go to parties and leave their phones on desks and counters, it’s very easy for someone to snoop around.
Then, when formatting, start putting the password at all to avoid eavesdropping.
It’s time to protect your Google account and iCloud
The second thing that most people do not realize is that if someone can access your iCloud or Google account, you can gain access to a lot of data that you can create and edit on your smartphone. At these times, you need an inconvenience to enable 2-step verification for both accounts. I wrote about how to protect your Google account and how to correctly set up backup and recovery options for 2-step verification.
Your Apple ID basically controls access to all Apple services that currently exist in iTunes to iCloud, FaceTime, iMessage, etc., etc. If someone can access your Apple ID, they can destroy your Apple life, including deleting your iPhone, iPad and Mac remotely. It’s pretty much the same problem with Google. Your Google account basically connects you to all Google services, from YouTube to Gmail, to Google Play, Google Maps, Calendar, Picasa, Google+, and so on. The more security in formatting the device, the better to avoid possible unwanted access.
Avoid jailbreaking or root of your smartphone
If you really know what you’re doing and jailbreak or root your cell phone for fun and enjoyment, then it’s good for you. If you want to do this because you heard about it in the news and you want to be “free” of restrictions, then you should avoid the process altogether. Firstly, it can mess up your phone and cause you more sadness than happiness. Second, you will not be able to upgrade your smartphone with the latest operating system updates as it will be in an unsupported mode.
Yes, you can install some applications and customize settings that you would not otherwise do, but that means you are also downloading applications that may contain malicious software.
So, if you format the phone for a root or jailbreak, think twice about not regretting it later.
Be careful about the applications you install
This is especially important on Android devices. There will be no shortage of applications that contain malware, viruses or other sneaky software to steal your data or damage your phone. The Apple App Store also has this problem, but to a much lesser extent. Apple scans each application before it is listed in the store and routinely removes applications from the store that are considered store policy violators.
After formatting the device, beware of the apps you are about to reinstall. Install only the essentials to avoid problems.
Use apps instead of browser on smartphone
If you are banking on your phone or stock or any other information that transmits confidential information between your phone and the Internet, it is best to use an official application for that website or company instead of opening it using the browser on your phone.
There are all kinds of messages “NOMEDOAPLICATIVO would like to access your data”. The data can be photos, location, contacts, etc., etc. Always be aware and do not click OK all the time. If you click anything at all times, it’s best to simply choose not to allow, and if you really can not use the application later, you can manually go back and change to allow access. Most of these requests are very legitimate and do no harm, but it is best to be safe.
On Android, it is again worse because some applications ask for permissions for everything, even if they do not need it. Choose good apps and you will spend less for this problem.
Back up your phone in a safe place
It is not only a good idea to keep your smartphone backed up in case you leave it in the bathroom, but also if it is stolen and you need to remotely clean it. Apple users can install the Find My iPhone application, which lets you remotely lock a phone and remotely delete it if you know it was stolen. Android users can install Android Device Manager.
If you did not back up your data, you will lose everything if it is stolen. If you back up locally or in the cloud, you can clean your phone and retrieve all your data on the new phone. You can sync your smartphone to your computer using iTunes or you can back it up to the cloud via iCloud.
On Android, there is an integrated backup tool, but it does not back up everything on your smartphone, like iOS. Instead, you’ll need to rely on third-party apps on the Google Play Store to make a full backup of your smartphone . Note that Android also has a remote wipe feature, but you must first configure it by installing certain apps.
Learn how to remotely format your device
If your smartphone is stolen and you want to protect your data, you can remotely format the device through Find my iPhone and Android Device Manager . Learn to use these tools before emergencies so that you can act before they steal your data.
Update your operating system after formatting
Just as you need to constantly install Microsoft security updates for your PC, it’s a good idea to install the latest updates for your smartphone. You can wait a few days and check that there are no major issues with the update, such as battery life degradation, etc., but if nothing stands out, update the phone.
In addition to updating the operating system, it is also a good idea to update the applications installed on your phone. These updates may include new features, but many of them are bug fixes, performance updates, and security fixes.
Then, as soon as you format your device, try upgrading your device and keeping all apps up to date.
After formatting your device, make sure you clean the wireless connections of your device, keeping only the most important and safe. This will greatly help with the security of your device, which may be automatically connecting to several unsecured networks.
Any questions? Please leave your comments in the comments so we can help!