A scammer that has your smartphone may only take moments to cause sizeable financial damage to you, your business and family, should they get access to the following information:

  • One time passwords – this is a boon for scammers who have already acquired your email id and have successfully cracked the password.
  • Emails – most of us do not bother to sign out every time and leave our personal as well as professional email accounts open in our smart phones for ease and for saving time. In most cases, including the link to reactivate your account by clicking on forgot password option is directed to the registered mail id.
  • Apart from financial fraud online, the scammer gets hold of confidential personal information and uses it for coercion and psychic scams
  • Corporate information – if you happen to be a person who belongs to the top management cadre or you own a business, it is quite possible that you store personal information of clients in your smart phones. This may be used for financial fraud online.

Now, proactive measures to protect mobile phones from data theft is worth much more than repenting after being victimized by frauds online. The following simple steps will make you mobile safe from data theft:

  • Use password for your files and applications to prevent fraud online

Use a strong password to protect files and media that is stored on the mobile phone.  Similarly, make use of an applocker to restrict access to your applications.

  • Use biometric access control for your mobile to avoid fraud online

Smartphones come with a range of options like fingerprint controlled access or lock screen with face recognition option etc, which are all means of protecting misuse of mobile phones and unauthorized access

  • Use only safe applications

Using unlicensed applications can entail legal liabilities for the person or the business . Similarly unless applications from a trusted source are used, it is possible that they may rank low in security and will be more vulnerable for hackers to gain unauthorized access to the phone. Equally important is the need to update applications regularly.

  • Ensure remote data wiping when phone gets lost

Employee owned mobile phones can contain data of sensitive nature and also financial data. When such a mobile device gets lost or stolen, it is of pivotal importance to make of facilities using which data can be deleted from remote. Additionally, it is also possible to enable the mobile to get locked after this and cannot be unlocked unless the right password is used. It is possible to use selective data wiping and one can choose the type of data that must be deleted when phone gets stolen.

  • Encrypting data challenges fraud online

This is being done by big corporates where important data on the business and clients are stored on mobile phone. This renders the data useless for interpretation and manipulation for fraud online, unless a cryptographic key is used. This is not sophisticated technology anymore and many smartphones are powered with the feature.

Using appropriate mobile device management applications can protect data stored on mobile phones.