Imagine a scenario where you have lost your phone. You don’t think much of it at first, but as your mind ponders the situation, you come to realize just how much personal information you store on your device. Photos of family, personal passwords, even credit card information can be lost due to lack of security on your phone. Below are 10 tips to protect your phone, and your privacy and security on your device.

1. Screen lock

When you set up a new device, you are usually prompted to enter a screen password as your first line of defense when someone is attempting to get information from it. Always select the most digits allowed,  most devices will give you the option for 4 or 6 digits, more digits means more secure!  This should be something that everyone has if they are at all concerned with securing their personal information.

2. Wifi protection

When traveling with your device, it may attempt to connect to unsecure local WiFi networks without you knowing. While this may be good for decreasing data usage, you should always disconnect from unsecure networks if you are not using them. If you choose to connect, be careful about what you enter online. With the right plan from AT&T, you may not even need WiFi, just stay on the ultra-fast, ultra-secure AT&T network!

3. Download security

Nowadays, smartphone manufacturers take extra precaution when you download 3rd party applications that are not verified to be secure. To ensure that your applications are not stealing your personal information, turn on the secure download feature in your phone’s settings app. This should be on by default.

4. Web Browsing

Some websites can maliciously steal your information by not being secure. Modern web browsers often check websites’ security certificates to make sure they aren’t trying to collect information about the users, so make sure that you are only browsing certified websites when using your device.

5. Install an Antivirus

Installing robust Mobile Device Management software onto your phone and other devices is a great way to prevent hacking and viruses from breaching your devices. Applications such as Workspace One from VMware, a Gartner Magic Quadrant leader for many years can secure your personal data while partitioning your corporate data, allowing you to selectively wipe either or both.  Mobile Device Security Solutions from AT&T could save your company in more ways than one.

6. Remote Wipe

Remotely wiping your device can be a scary thing to do, but if your phone is ultimately lost or stolen, it may be a good idea to remotely wipe all content from another device. You can also contact the carrier and have them Black Label the Device ID so that thieves cannot reactive your lost or stolen device.  We recommend this because if someone has gained access to your phone, it is much easier to set up a new phone than it would be to risk your credit cards, social profiles and phots albums.

7. Set Secure Passwords

This may be obvious, but some people use passwords like 0000, or 1234, or password. Setting a password that is long, has multiple characters, and uses special characters vastly reduces the chance of someone being able to login to your personal accounts.

8. Update Your Operating System

Typically found under system settings, a software update may be available for your device. Whenever possible, set your device to do automatic updates when available.  This way you will never forget. Always keeping your system up to date ensures that you always get the latest security features and patches when they are available.

9. Do Not Jailbreak Your Phone

Most people need not worry about this, but technology forward users will often come across the option of ‘jailbreaking’ their device. Doing so gives you more control over the software on your phone, but could also result in software crashes and increased vulnerability.

10. Do Not Use Public Chargers

While an abstract concept, public charging cables can be a breach of your personal data. While it may seem harmless, the charging cables in smartphones often serve as the cables that can put or take data from your phone. If you can help it, charge our devices at home or use portable battery chargers.