SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--With the holiday season in full swing, more people are using their smartphone for tasks such as last minute shopping, accessing bank accounts, connecting with friends or making shopping lists on their phone. Smartphones are also expected to be one on the top gifts under the tree this season, so millions of new users will be trying out their new phones and looking for tips for getting started and staying safe.
“This year people will be doing more with their phones than ever before,” said John Hering, CEO and founder of Lookout Mobile Security. “As millions of new smartphone users come online this holiday season, we want to give them some simple tips to stay safe.”
For anyone with a smartphone this season, Lookout Mobile Security, the leading provider of smartphone security, created a quick list of tips to help smartphone owners stay safe this holiday season.
Stay Smarter Than Your Smartphone: Ten Tips To Stay Safe
1. Set a password. One of the most common challenges for smartphone owners is losing the phone and all the personal data on it. Setting a strong password for your phone and enabling the screen auto-lock time to be five minutes is the simplest way to keep your personal information private during this busy season.
2. Download the updates for your phone. Always take the extra time to download software updates. Often, they include patches to security flaws recently found in the software. Just like a desktop or laptop computer, staying up to date is your first line of defense from hackers and viruses.
3. Treat your phone like your PC. As phones become more powerful and consumers do more with them, they become more attractive targets for malicious attacks. Protect yourself and your private data from malware, spyware and malicious apps by downloading a security app like Lookout Mobile Security.
4. Use discretion when downloading apps. One of the most exciting things to do with a new smartphone is explore all the great applications you can download onto it. As you begin to explore, make sure you download responsibly. Only download apps from sites you trust, check the app’s rating and read the reviews to make sure they’re widely used and respected.
5. Pay attention to the private data accessed by apps. Applications have the capability to access a lot of information about you. When you install an app, take the time to read the data and personal information that it needs to access. Whether it is access to your location, your personal information or text messages, it should make sense that the application needs access to those capabilities.
6. Download a “find your phone” app. No matter how diligent you are about keeping your phone on you at all times, you’re bound to lose it once, or it may even get stolen at some point. Download an app that helps you find your phone in case it is lost or stolen. Make sure you can remotely lock your phone if it is lost or stolen.
7. Exercise caution with links in SMS messages. Smishing, or a combination of SMS texting and phishing, is when scammers send you a text to a malicious website or ask you to enter sensitive information. Don’t click on links in text messages or emails if you don’t know the sender or they look suspicious. Trust your instincts.
8. On Public WiFi, limit email, social networking and only window shop. Public WiFi networks have become ubiquitous, but unfortunately securing the websites you may access haven’t. Many websites, email programs, instant messaging programs and social networking sites are not entirely safe to browse or access from a public WiFi network. Also, trying to limit your online shopping to “window shopping” on a public network.
9. Never enter your credit card information on a site that begins with only “http//”. If a website ever asks you to enter your credit card information, you should automatically look to see if the web address begins with “https”. On unsecured networks, (those that have only have http://), mean a hacker could easily steal information like usernames, passwords and credit card numbers, which could lead to identity theft.
10. Enable a Wipe feature on your phone. If you find yourself (or your phone) in a difficult situation, and you won’t be able to get your phone back, a Wipe application will clear all the data so your private information won’t fall into the wrong hands. If you can, try to download an app where you can wipe your SD card too.
About Lookout Mobile Security
Lookout is a smartphone security company dedicated to making the mobile experience safe for everyone. Lookout delivers protection from malware and spyware, data backup and recovery, and can locate a missing device if it is lost or stolen. Lookout’s unique cross-platform, cloud-connected application is designed from the ground up to provide advanced protection for smartphones while remaining lightweight and efficient on the phone. With users across 400 mobile networks in 170 countries, Lookout is a world leader in smartphone security. Lookout’s award-winning mobile application is currently free and available for Android, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile devices. Headquartered in San Francisco, Lookout is funded by Khosla Ventures, Trilogy Equity Partners and Accel Partners. For more information and to download the application, please visit www.mylookout.com.