Keeping Your iPhone Safe and Secure
Date Posted:22 June 2012
Using a mobile device that has your personal information stored on it is like keeping all your eggs in one basket. It will always involve an element of risk. Here are a few tips to help keep your iPhone and its contents more safe and secure.
An iPhone is a delicate instrument with fragile components that can easily be damaged by rough handling. You paid a lot of money for it, so it’s well worth investing in a sturdy case to protect it against knocks and bangs. Many cases now also have an iPhone portable charger built in.
If you store a lot of data on your iPhone, you should back it up periodically onto a memory card, just as you would a computer, so that if your phone is lost, damaged or destroyed, you won’t lose vital information.
iPhones have some basic security features that you should take advantage of.
- Enable the Auto-Lock function. This way, if you leave your iPhone unattended for more than a minute or so, the touchscreen will lock and no one will be able to gain access to your data
- The Passcode Lock is an added security feature that requires a four digit passcode to be entered after your iPhone has been locked in order to regain access
- A further line of defence is the Erase Data function, which will erase all data on your iPhone after 10 failed attempts to enter the passcode
- You should also enable the Privacy and Security settings in the Safari browser, including Block Pop-Ups (prevents exposure to malicious malware) and Fraud Warning (stops you from visiting bogus websites)
To prevent someone making unauthorised phone calls, disable the Voice Dial function, which can be accessed without unlocking the iPhone.
You should also disable the SMS Preview feature, which can be accessed without a passcode.
Geotagging is another iPhone feature that could present security issues. It can reveal the location of photos you take and upload from your iPhone to the Internet. If you don’t want your location made public, this is a feature you may wish to disable.
If your iPhone is Bluetooth enabled and you don’t use a Bluetooth helmet (for motorcyclists) or a Bluetooth headset, then you should turn off Bluetooth altogether, as it can be used by hackers to access your phone.
Rather than just restoring your iPhone to factory settings before selling it, you would be well advised to securely erase all data with the Erase All Content function.
Apple issues regular iPhone updates that fix bugs and address security issues and it is important that you update regularly to ensure you have the latest version of firmware running.
It is also recommended that you manually delete your browsing history, cookies and caches after each visit to a sensitive website, such as your bank or other financial institution.
While all these precautions may seem like overkill now, there may come a day when your iPhone is lost, stolen or hacked into. On that day, you may be very thankful you took the extra trouble to make it just that little bit more safe and secure.