Tag: iPhone Security

Stolen iPhones and Security

Stolen iPhones and SecurityThis post is about iPhone Security, not the type of security were someone hacks into your iPhone and takes over your phone, although I guess that can happen. Instead this post is about the type of iPhone Security when someone steals your iPhone! Stolen iPhones and Security

A good friend of mine was walking down the street the other day reading her email or sending a text message. She was walking along, not really paying attention to what she was doing and suddenly a guy walked up beside her and grabbed the iPhone out of her hands. Easy to do since she was holding it loosely while pressing the screen as she was preparing to send a message. Lot’s of people do this. You see them every day walking down the sidewalk, through the mall, or even walking into traffic without paying attention to were they are going.

It happened in seconds and the guy started to run off to be joined by a number of friends. Now we discussed ways to limit the amount of financial damage losing your iPhone can do in the previous post, “Smart Phone Security”. Check that post out if you need more information about protecting yourself.

Stolen iPhones and Security – What She Did Next

This was not the smartest thing to do, but she yelled at the guy. She chased him down and demanded her iPhone back. She used a lot of expletives and called him every name in the book. Next thing she knows she is surrounded by his buddies all taunting her as well as him. This situation could have gotten really bad, had she not thought quickly.

She yelled a lot of expletives , saw that was not working. Of course was surrounded by his friends with people walking by on a crowded sidewalk not paying attention.

Then she changed her tack and started yelling at the top of her lungs for help. She yelled that someone had stolen her iPhone and she was being surrounded.  This began to attract the attention of passers by. The gang realized that they were  dealing with a smart chick who was not intimidated by them. Of course anyone who steals like that is a bum and a coward. So as soon as you face them up in this manner they back off.

They handed her iPhone back and took off just as a few men were coming to her rescue. As a result she was very fortunate and lucky. If she had not been on a crowded street she would not have had a chance. It might have turned out much worse if she was surrounded on a quiet residential street!
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Smart Phone Security

Smart Phone SecuritySmart Phone Security, can include were someone hacks into your smart phone and takes over your phone, or someone stealing your phone. This post is about the type of Smart Phone Security when someone steals your phone!

A good friend of mine was walking down the street the other day reading her email or sending a text message. I know you are not supposed to that. There has been all kinds of reports were people have hurt themselves walking into objects and other people. They even walk into the middle of the road and are hit by cars. That is actually another reason for not doing this sort of thing, but this post is focused on Smart Phone Security.

Anyway she was walking along, not really paying attention to what she was doing. Suddenly a guy walked up beside her and grabbed the smart phone out of her hands. Easy to do since she was holding it loosely while pressing the keyboard as she was preparing to send a message.

Apps Are Not Password Protected

She has a lot of apps on her Smart Phone , however they all have auto sign on turned on. Yes, her bank information, her credit cards, Paypal, Skype and much much more. Worse her phone was open and turned on because she was using it. Easy for someone to keep using the phone until the battery wore down, accessing her bank account and other applications that she has on the phone.

We used to be worried about losing our cell phone and someone racking up huge long distance charges. You still need to worry about this, but even more important is the applications we have on these Smart Phones and the damage someone can do to us financially. And I am not even mentioning the wireless transfer of funds when you bump smart phones together!

So How Do we Avoid Smart Phone Security being jeopardized?

There are numerous ways to tighten up security on our phones. As well as avoid the type of situation my friend had over the weekend. Here is a partial list which if you follow will certainly decrease the chance of both having your phone stolen as well as losing money through Smart Phone applications that are open. Here we go:

  • Do not text, email or use apps while walking or driving
  • Keep your Smart Phone locked at all times except when using it
  • Keep a firm grip on your Smart Phone when using it
  • Make sure no one observes you as you enter passwords
  • Make sure you phone auto locks after 15 seconds of no activity
  • Never store passwords on your Smart Phone
  • Always type your passwords into the phone when accessing an app
  • Never write down passwords

If your Smart Phone  is stolen or lost, it still is a big loss. However not as big as you might think if your apps are compromised. Following the above steps will help to limit the loss of your phone.

We will let you know the details of how the situation turned out in our next post. However for readers who do not have the time to come back next week, she did get her phone back in an interesting way.

Wipe Your Smart Phone

Another common method for smart phones offered by some carriers is that you can wipe your phone if it is stolen or lost. This is a good thing. Assuming you will never get your phone back. However by the time you reach your carrier and have the phone wiped the damage will already have been done. Protect yourself by not using your phone when you are not paying attention to were you are going or in large crowded areas.

We appreciate comments on this subject of Smart Phone Security as well as our suggestions to protect yourself. Please leave comments as well with additional suggestions that we can alert our readers to for improving their personal Smart Phone Security.

For more on Smart phones and security issues, click here.


iPhone Security

iPhone SecurityWhat do you worry about most about your iPhone, iPod or iPad? Like many mobile devices your Apple iPhone 3G, iPod, or iPad is also prone to being hacked and other safety or security threats. The new iPhone 6 now has much better iPhone Security with the thumbprint feature recently added. However any iPhones that are older still need to be protected in the traditional manner.  But many of us do not give hacking a seconds thought, instead we worry about losing our devices. We do not take iPhone safety threats as seriously as we take threats about losing or breaking one of these devices.

I am paranoid about leaving it somewhere and I actually lost an iPhone from one of those belt clip on things. It just fell off one day and I did not notice it when it fell. Now I only carry it in my pocket or in my brief case and never on my belt. The company I work for wiped it remotely so nothing in terms of importance was lost other than the iPhone and of course my pride. But there is much more to be concerned about.

While the iPhone 3G is a stable and secure device you should nevertheless follow the following iPhone security tips to prevent any hacks or intrusion attempts while you use your iPhone mail client, surf the net or are logged into the local Wi-Fi network. I use an iPod predominantly over WiFi at the local Starbucks and other coffee shops. There is always someone around on their PC’s and who knows what they are doing. Maybe they are trying to hack into my iPod.

Here are a few tips you should consider when using one of these devices at a free WiFi site:

iPhone Security  WiFi Tips:

Most of use our iPhone to access open Wi-Fi networks frequently and fail to “forget” the network from our iPhone Wi-Fi settings. This is an open invitation to any person with mischief on his/her mind who can connect to your iPhone the next time you visit or pass by the Wi-Fi hotspot by simply scanning the network devices. Your iPod/iPhone will auto connect the next time you pass by this WiFi site unless you “forget” the network.  To prevent this set your iPhone “Ask to Join Networks” option on. Also make sure you “forget” the open network after you have exited it.

iPhone Passcode Security Tips:

Okay setting an access Passcode is elementary security tip. However it is  very important,  because we tend to use our smartphones for far more security-sensitive applications like email, website access etc. Protect your private info in case your iPhone gets stolen or lost by barring access to the phone/iPod with a passcode. Set your iPhone Passcode lock from Settings > General > Passcode Lock. Once you set the access Passcode your iphone will automatically lock after the selected time interval.

iPhone Security – Application Passwords

Many people ask the smartphone to remember sign in information. For example signing into your bank with a user ID and password can be remembered by your phone. If someone does find your phone and gets past the passcode we discussed in the previous section, then they have full access to all your banking information and your money! Always force yourself to renter both the user id and the password for all applications to provide an additional level of security.

Using VPN for enhanced iPhone Security:

Virtual Private Network (VPN) encrypts all data sent to and from between your iPhone and the selected network. This option is especially useful if you are accessing any open Wi-Fi network, to block any peeping tom from scanning and accessing your iPhone. Note that the site you are reaching must support VPN access. Many corporations require this feature if they are providing remote access to mail and company networks. Thankfully, Apple has included a VPN client with the iPhone.

iPhone Web Security Tips:

The iPhone features the  Safari web browser with many customizable options which when selected can prevent malicious malware like trojans, viruses etc from infecting your iPhone. Firstly ensure that pop-ups are blocked as they may contain concealed malware seeking to enter your phone. Just check the Block Pop-ups option in the Safari settings.

Managing cookies applies to all wireless devices including laptops as well as smartphones, iPods, iPhones and iPads. Another iPhone/iPod security tip includes managing the cookies or the files stored on your iPhone by the websites you visit. Remember to always delete the cookies after every session by tapping the Clear Cookies button in the Safari settings. Users who want to be extremely cautious can completely disable cookies, but note that to access most of the websites you need to accept cookies.

Secure iPhone Emailing Tips:

When using your iPhone or iPod  for sending or receiving emails remember to do so over a SSL protocol. The Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encrypts all mail sent and received via your iPhone. Google and many other email systems are now supporting HTPPS on their systems to add security. Using a non-SSL mail client can seriously compromise your privacy and security. Think an open postcard versus a sealed envelope, it’s that big a difference. If your mail client does not support SSL, then just use one that does.

We appreciate any additional security tips that readers may be aware of. Please add them via comments to this post. Spam comments will be auto deleted. For more Apple details, click here.



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