Smartphone technology has advanced rapidly over the last few years. We started off with brick-shaped phones in the early eighties which had the sole function of making and receiving calls. Eventually, the stylish nineties brought in fashionable flip mobiles which added an exaggerated touch to ending calls. Back then, probably the most flip phones could contribute to one’s social life was sending text messages.
Never could we imagine having access to the entire world on our phones. And that was exactly what the mobiles of the 2000s introduced – multiple purpose phones which functioned beyond calls and texts. Take for instance the crowd favorite smartphones such as Samsung and iPhone, which come equipped with hard drives, memory space sufficient to hold personal contacts, games, photos, and videos as well as web surfing functionality. With such multipurpose utilities, your mobile device is your entire life wrapped in one machine.
With that being said, it is not impossible to see the future of smartphones being used as the ultimate device to access the internet as it is the most conducive and easiest device to use. However, the main issue which arises, upon using your phone as a second computer is, how safe are you and the information you store or even transfer from cyber threats?
The recent Cloud lead bug proved to be a detrimental threat to personal data and even worse the fact that it affected search engines and applications which were members of CloudFlare and could be accessed via mobile phones.
Mobile browsing privacy protection
Utilize The Smartphone’s In Built Lock
For starters, consider the general rule of if your phone cannot be accessed physically, then your privacy cannot be invaded. Smartphones these days come equipped with locks in the form of numerical passwords, fingerprint codes and more.
Ensure your phone is securely guarded by making use of the smartphone’s lock system whenever the device is not in use. One should also consider using a wipe utility, which helps eliminate all data if your mobile phone is stolen.
As irritating as it may seem to key in a code before using your mobile, think of it this way, you will no longer be making accidental calls while your phone is in your pocket. Also, should your mobile phone ever get pickpocketed, you will never have to worry about the thief ever having access to your personal data.
Always use the App store to make Downloads
You might find updates and app downloads to be faster or even more convenient when you don’t go through a proper channel or medium like the app store, but truth be told you are putting your smartphone’s life in danger. Stay away from the temptation to download items from third-party sites as these websites do not offer malware protection the way app store does. Not only does the app store provide protection against malicious software, in fact, but programs installed from the app store are also regularly scanned to ensure top-notch security.
Beware of Public WiFi
It is perfectly understandable how expensive data plans can cost, especially when you are killing time browsing YouTube videos at a coffee shop waiting for your late date or even at the airport waiting for a delayed flight. A cheaper and pocket-friendly alternative would be to log on to the free wifi account available at most restaurants and international airports. But bear in mind one thing when it comes to public networks, your internet activities are accessible to any hacker within the vicinity.
Maybe killing time while you wait for your next flight by checking out the latest tabloid gossip on your smartphone doesn’t sound that dangerous. But if you were deciding to do a little bit of last minute banking, you might want to reconsider when using public wifi.
Better yet, always opt to switch off your Bluetooth and Wifi whenever not in usage to make sure it does not auto connect to any available public connections.
Ditch the Spam
Online surfing is pretty much similar be it done on a desktop or with a smartphone. You’re prone to seeing annoying pop-up windows and too good to be true download specials. These are the worse as the second you click on these windows, you are endangering your smartphone making it vulnerable to viruses.
Spam is not limited to pop-up windows only as phishing is also a serious cyber threat faced by web users via mobile these days. Phishing usually takes form of banks or authorities requesting you to click on a link which later leads you to a malicious site where your personal data can be stolen.
Apart from that, consider double checking the URL in the address bar of the browser and also webmail which you may be using. A legit site would have a URL that starts with
It pays to be a bit more wary of questionable pop-up windows at all times, be it surfing via desktop or even mobile.
Keep your Software Updated
One can never overemphasize the importance of an updated software, especially for smartphones. Mobile devices with current and updated software will keep you protected against mobile encryption and hackers, hence allowing you to surf the web on your mobile safer.
Be Wary of geotagging
Geo-tagging or to be specific checking into certain locations on your social media platforms may be a raging trend at the moment. That’s because it makes meeting up with friends so much more convenient. Unfortunately, in terms of cybersecurity, geo-tagging opens windows to cyberstalking and a myriad of crimes such as home burglary, kidnap, etc.
Stick to VPN
If you really cannot avoid from using public networks, then one wise word of advice would be to install a VPN security. With a VPN, all mobile activities will be encrypted even when your smartphone is logged on to public WiFi or a data plan. An example of a great VPN solution is CyberGhost which has is based on an anti-malicious module. CyberGhost helps update smartphone users of potential malicious presence which makes it a fantastic assistant when doing online transactions or exchanging confidential information via the web.