Saturday, October 22, 2011

Mobile Device Security

Whether we are at work, or on-the-go, it is our responsibility to protect the information (and the devices) that we use in our daily lives.  Here are a few quick reminders about mobile device security:

Keep a clean machine:  Make sure your mobile device is operating the latest software.  Having the latest security software, web browser, and operating system are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats.

Protect your personal information:  Make passwords long and strong: Combine capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols to create a more secure password.  Also, separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals.

When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts, and online advertising are often the way cybercriminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it's best to delete it.

Connect with care:   Be smart about Wi-Fi hotspots -- limit the type of business you conduct on a public network, refrain from connecting to generic networks, and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your machine.

Download with care:  Apps can be useful and fun, but make sure you read the fine print and download from reputable sources.  Uninstall apps that you no longer use or need.  Update apps regularly (and turn on auto-update) so that new features, including security updates, get applied.

Be aware of your surroundings:  Watch out for shoulder surfers, and be mindful that others can listen or look in on your conversation when you're in a public place.

When in a secure facility:
  Remember to disable all Wi-Fi and Bluetooth features of your mobile device and headset.

Back it up:
Protect your valuable digital information by making an electronic copy and storing it safely.

Keep it with you:  When traveling, your mobile device should be kept with you and never left unattended.  If you do need to store your device, place it in a secure location (locked desk, secure cabinet, etc).

Be scan savvy:  Prior to your phone being security scanned when traveling, remove things like your battery, SIM and SD cards.  This can reduce the threats of data being copied or the phone being compromised while out of your control.

Report it:  If your device, or the information it contains, becomes lost, stolen, or compromised, report the incident before taking any action with the carrier so a wipe command can be issued..

Think before you act: Before you download, before you click, before you post, before you leave your device somewhere -- take a moment to ensure you are practicing good cybersecurity habits. 

Cybersecurity is our shared responsibility.  Practice the principles: "Stop. Think. Connect.", and keep in mind that it is our responsibility to protect the information that has been intrusted to us, our businesses and our clients.