Mobile devices help us connect, work, shop, and play—and to enable that, they hold a lot of personal information. Get tips to better protect your device and yourself.
Power Up Mobile Cybersecurity
What Can You Do?
- Think before you tap. A text message with a special offer or “important message” from an unknown number, which includes a strange-looking link: have you gotten one of these? Because links in text messages are often shortened, you have no way of knowing the link’s destination. Dangerous sites could be lurking on the other end of those links. Use the same caution you would use with a phishing email, and delete such texts – don’t click or tap on the link.
- Connect with caution. Public wireless networks and hotspots are often convenient, but rarely secure. Anyone could potentially see what you’re doing on your mobile device while you’re connected. Scammers can also set up fake Wi-Fi networks in public places to harvest information from anyone who joins the network. Be cautious when it comes to public Wi-Fi: limit what you do on public Wi-Fi, and avoid logging in to email or financial accounts via a public Wi-Fi network.
- Update your device automatically. Turn on automatic updating for your devices, so they’re always running the latest version of whatever operating system and apps you use. Attackers are always looking for new weaknesses in software, and vendors are constantly releasing updates and patches to fix them. Keeping your devices and apps up to date makes them much harder to hack.
- Check out this helpful article on how to update Android apps: https://support.google.com/googleplay/answer/113412?hl=en If you use an Apple device, follow the instructions here to turn on automatic updates: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202180
- Pay attention to your MFA notifications. Did you actually login when prompted? Don’t just click accept each time. This can be an indicator that your password was stolen. Report these events to firstname.lastname@example.org or your account provider if involving personal accounts.
- Protect with PINs, passcodes, or biometrics. These features lock your device to prevent unauthorized access. The strongest level of protection is a biometric identifier, like your fingerprint or your face. If you use a 4-digit PIN to protect your device, consider changing it to a 6-digit PIN. An alphanumeric passcode, or a mixture of letters and numbers, is even stronger.
- Keep tabs on your device. The biggest risk to your device is most likely carelessness. Protect your mobile device by keeping it with you in public. Don’t leave it unattended. When you’re not using it, store it in a closed bag or an inside pocket.
If your university-issued device is lost or stolen, report it as soon as possible to email@example.com, as well as to local police.