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Smartphones have become very important in our everyday affairs. They have become very important that we cannot do without them. We browse, check our emails, chat with our and make calls among many other uncountable functions. Due to our obsession with our phones, there are a whole lot of important rules we forget to follow. We share some of these tips.

Lock your device with a password

Without this first layer of security in effect, anyone who picks up your phone can access your apps and the data held within. Set a passcode that only you know, and simply tap it in before you use your phone. For those devices that allow it, you can also set a “touch ID” that opens the phone in response to your fingerprint.

Avoid suspicious links

Any link you receive in an email or text should be looked at with a suspicious eye. If you don’t know the sender, don’t even think about clicking on the link. If you do know the sender, make sure they did indeed send it before you click. False email, text, and message accounts pretending to be a person or entity you know is a common cybercriminal trick.

Update your software immediately

Whenever an update is released for your device, download and install it right away. These updates often include security fixes, vulnerability patches, and other necessary maintenance.

Use unique passwords for all your online account

Avoid reusing any passwords. When cybercriminals get a user’s password in their grasp, they try that password for every one of the user’s accounts. Don’t give them that kind of skeleton key. The best practice is to use a password manager to create unique, hard-to-crack passwords. The advantage with a password manager is that it remembers all your passwords for you.

Use a VPN on public Wi-Fi networks

It’s hard to avoid using open Wi-Fi — you’re busy, you’re out and about, and you need to do some online transactions. So, if you must use open Wi-Fi in a situation like this, get a VPN app for your mobile device. It makes you anonymous online, so you can use open Wi-Fi safely hidden from the eyes of lurking cybercriminals.

Download apps from reputable app stores

Use only the official app stores — Apple App Store if you have an iPhone or iPad, and Google Play store if you have an Android device. It’s all too common for malware developers to create fake malicious apps and put them up on shady third-party sites, hoping someone will be naive enough to download them. Official app stores have a more stringent vetting process.

By: Damilola Faustino

See Also: #TechTuesday-5 Tools to Help You Screenshot a Website

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