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How to properly secure your Android to keep snoops out

How to properly secure your Android to keep snoops out
© Ymgerman | Dreamstime.com

It's not very often I let my cellphone out of my sight, but when it happens I feel like a fish out of water. There's this eerie feeling that comes over me: What if I miss a call or an email? What if I need to do a quick Google search to find some information?

But the interesting thing is that, when this happens, I rarely worry about my gadget's security. Why is that?

Well, for me, it's because I have the advantage of working for Komando.com, and I follow the advice that we offer. In other words, I've taken the steps to secure my gadget so it's protected against snoops and hackers.

For others out there, I'm sure there's a different reason why their gadget's security (or lack thereof) doesn't cause them to lose sleep at night. It's probably because they're not aware of just how many threats are out there that can impact Android tablets and smartphones. For example, did you know there's currently a mobile wireless flaw that allows hackers to pinpoint your exact location? And that's just the beginning. Click here to discover more security risks every smartphone user should be aware of.

Lock your device properly

This seems obvious. Although it may place one extra step between you and your gadget's content, it also adds a barrier for an unwanted visitor.

There are multiple ways to lock your Android device, including passwords, patterns, fingerprints and PINS. Most of these options offer great protection, however, we don't recommend that you use a pattern. This is because patterns are much easier to guess or crack since your fingers leave smudges on the screen that can be traced back by hackers.

We also don't recommend that you use any type of facial recognition as a security measure, especially since this feature on the Galaxy S8s can be fooled by holding a photo of you in front of your phone's camera.

While we're talking about lock screens, there's also another related setting you should probably avoid. It's called "Smart Lock On-body detection," and it basically leaves your phone unlocked whenever it's on your person. Which won't be a problem unless you get pickpocketed. If someone can snatch your gadget from your back pocket or backpack, you've basically just given them free access to everything you have stored on it.

You'll find this feature in your Settings menu, so make sure you tap Skip.

Next page: Fight back against malware-carrying apps, and more
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