Android Security: 10 Ways to Protect Your Device From Malware, Theft

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2013-03-21 Print this article Print

5. Download apps from respected sources

All smartphone users should try to avoid malicious and compromised mobile apps. That may be easier said than done. But the Google Play marketplace has a solid selection of reputable programs. But some malicious software can slip through the cracks. And because Android is open-source, some users are tempted to download programs from other stores that are not as well-vetted as Google Play. In those cases, watch out.

6. Remember the network

When looking at Android security, folks often forget about the network. How safe is a connection from an Android handset to a corporate network with all kinds of sensitive information? Ensuring that an effective VPN is in use and accessing corporate data only from reputable network resources is absolutely necessary.

7. Tracking is important

Sometimes, Android handsets or tablets can be misplaced. In those cases, it's important to have some type of device-tracking application deployed and accessible on your phone. Tracking allows users to find out where their devices are and, even more importantly, remotely wipe them so those in possession of them can't steal information.

8. Update, update, update

Google periodically releases updates to Android that address bugs and security problems. The trouble is there are quite a few Android users who don't actually update their software. That's a mistake. As soon as updates are made available, they should be applied. Failing to do so leaves users at greater risk.

9. Encryption is always necessary

Encrypting data is just as important as keeping it safely hidden behind a firewall. Encryption means keeping data safe even when the information is in the hands of the wrong person. Several encryption programs are available to Android users, but ensuring that they have the highest level of encryption possible is extremely important.

10. Stop believing you're safe

The mobile malware threat started a several years ago. Yet serious discussions about keeping people safe really only started in 2012. What's worse, the uninformed think that they can do what they want when they want with their Android devices and be just fine. That's just plain wrong. It's time all Android users and users of all types of mobile devices stop thinking they're safe and admit that really bad things can happen.

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