Hackers targeting mobile phones and devices are taking advantage and have become a major concern.

Increased Vulnerability

Data breaches are on the rise. Malware, created and used by hackers to retrieve personal information, is a serious threat to mobile devices. Verizon’s Data Breach Report has identified five types of malware affecting mobile devices through text messages, photos, and call recordings.

  1. Trojans – Remember the Trojan horse which led to the fall of Troy? In the same way, Trojan malware appears to be legitimate. Laptops and netbooks are susceptible to Trojans when they open a “back door.” Once in the system Hackers steal pertinent information. A fake banking app is one of the most popular Trojans.
  2. Spyware – When spyware is downloaded information about the user is gathered and then passed on to a third party.
  3. Riskware –A device’s security protocol functions are decreased with this threat when a special code is used to interfere with the device’s security.
  4. Chargeware – This threat allows services never used or ordered to be charged to your accounts. Chargeware also appears to be valid.
  5. Adware – Annoying popups never seem to go away, are frustrating and will occasionally have spyware sharing your private data with other parties.

Hackers gather and share information without mobile device users knowing or giving permission. All are unsafe. Users need to be aware of the consequences and take measures to secure their devices.

Use Your Security Options

Mobile devices have security features easily used to deter malware threats. Auto-locking, passwords, and biometrics are used to access data and encryption or VPN (Virtual Private Network) options are available. Basic precautions are changing the default password and implementing a public Wi-Fi policy.

Protecting Devices from Malware

Be proactive in protecting all devices. Identify security features on each mobile device and use them. A code to unlock your phone every time you want to use it may be awkward but is less annoying than having to spend hours, days and weeks cleaning up the chaos of identity theft.
A mobile device may be programmed to lock automatically after it is idle for a selected amount of time. Unlocking it repeatedly is a small inconvenience, but prevents information being stolen. Use biometric and privacy controls. Turn on the anti-theft apps built into your device.
It is never a good idea to leave devices unattended or out of sight. Always keep them with you. If you pass through a security checkpoint, place all devices in a bag.

Other Precautions to Protect Your Mobile Devices

  • Update and patch software before leaving home. When receiving an update, install and use it.
  • When finished with a website or app, log out of the session.
  • Install security software on your device if there is none. Software is available to locate a missing device and will remotely wipe it clean. Find My iPhone is a popular security app iPhone users choose.
  • Use privacy and security settings on social media apps. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other social media have these settings. Use them on all devices.
  • Be aware of phishing. Only open emails and text messages you know are legitimate. If in doubt, don’t open the email. If someone needs to reach you, they will find a way.

Security for mobile devices is your responsibility.

Bridge to Better Living assists Seniors and families find a Senior Living Community providing security to help protect you, your quality of life and yes… your mobile devices. If keeping current with technology is important, Bridge to Better Living is able to identify communities offering classes, activities, and groups for residents to enjoy while indulging in social media. Contact Bridge to Better Living for a consultation to begin the search for a physically and virtually safe Senior Living Community. Bridge to Better Living is always at no cost to the client.