In 2019 we saw the number of cyber attacks on smartphones rocket by 50% on the previous year. Hackers began to identify them as an opportunity for surveillance, credential theft and malicious advertising.
With the increase in remote working and us accessing our business emails and network on the go more frequently, it’s a threat that could continue to grow.
So, how can you protect your smartphone from a cyber attack?
When it comes to free WiFi, it’s very tempting to ask no questions and just go about your business but public networks are a playground for cyber criminals. You should ensure your smartphone is not set to automatically connect to any unfamiliar networks when you are out in public.
You can do this via your settings or, for extra security, simply turn off your WiFi connection when you are out in public and don’t need it.
Only download apps from your device’s app store and not through your browser. Apps downloaded from the Apple Store or Play Store are tested for security issues before being made available. This is not the case for apps downloaded through your browser.
When you are downloading a new app, it’s also worth paying attention to the reviews. If the reviews are poor or there are not many of them, this can be a sign that the app is insecure.
You should also pay attention to any updates available for your existing apps. Just like with applications on your PC or laptop, these updates are likely to include security fixes as well as functionality updates.
Also pay attention to what the app has access to; notifications can be annoying but access to microphones and location services can pose security risks.
If you keep in mind that when you’re not making a call or sending a text, your smartphone is just a handheld computer, you can’t go far wrong. Just like with your laptop or PC, pop-up ads and giveaways when you’re browsing often lead to phishing sites. If the offering seems too good to be true, it probably is, so avoid clicking at all costs.
Learn more about phishing scams.
Like WiFi, enabled Bluetooth is an open door for cyber criminals to access your phone. The easiest way around this is to ensure the Bluetooth option ‘auto-pairing’ is disabled in your settings. This stops your phone from connecting to another Bluetooth device without you knowing.
And of course, when you’re not using your Bluetooth you can turn it off – it will be one less vulnerability available for cyber criminals to exploit.
Yes, it’s a thing. Voice phishing is a form of social engineering. You’ll receive a call or a voice mail from a real person or an automated recording requesting personal details or financial information. It may sound common sense not to divulge any of this information, but these people are professionals and are good at triggering an emotional response which can cloud your judgement.
If you experience calls like this on multiple occasions, you should consider contacting your service provider.
Jupiter IT – we’re passionate about cyber security.
As cyber crime grows more and more sophisticated, we know that pristine cyber security has never been more important for businesses. That’s why we provide free, content-rich, cyber security staff training for all our clients.
To find out more, drop us a line – we’re waiting to share our expertise with you.