If you own a smartphone, chances are that it’s a veritable treasure trove of personal information. And that means it’s also an attractive target for cybercriminals.
Hacking modern handsets is entirely possible, so that means you need to be alert to the likelihood of malicious manipulation.
Here’s an overview of the security threats facing modern mobile users so you can steer clear of them.
The annual cost of cybercrime is close to $7 billion in the US alone, with businesses and individuals alike targeted by hackers.
Sometimes the aim of these attacks is simply to cause disruption, but more often than not the goal is to extract private data and use this for nefarious means.
The upshot is that no one is safe, and with the expenses of breaches spiraling into millions per minute, ignoring the risks is simply untenable as a tactic.
If you’re interested in ways to tell if your iPhone is hacked, check Certo’s list to find out. Red flags include erratic or sluggish performance, fast-draining battery life, odd sounds during calls and inexplicably high levels of data usage.
Anyone who has experienced a desktop PC or laptop with a malware infection will be familiar with many of these indicators, as they point to rogue software running in the background and monopolizing system resources while trying not to let the user know what’s going on.
There are quite a number of strategies available to modern mobile phone owners who want to stay out of the reach of cyber attackers.
The first is to install reputable security software on your phone and regularly carry out scans to check that no infection is present.
The second is to avoid installing any unknown apps which don’t have many, or indeed any, user reviews attached to them. It’s possible for illegitimate apps to slip through the net and onto the official app stores of Apple and Google, so you still need to keep your wits about you in this context.
The third is to look out for phishing emails and phony websites. Opening scam messages could leave your device infected in a jiffy, while sites which aren’t properly secured or are actively designed to scam innocent visitors are also a conduit for malware in most cases.
Lastly, you need to remember that your phone can be hacked if some dodgy third party gets physical access to it. So don’t leave it lying around in public, and definitely remember to use a password protected lock screen, to which only you know the code to gain access.
Even if you follow all of the advice on keeping your phone secure and protected, you can’t fully guarantee that it won’t be exploited by hackers at some point.
For this reason you also need to have a plan for dealing with the aftermath of a breach. Backing up your precious data elsewhere is key to this, because you don’t want a compromised or stolen device to leave you in the lurch.
You also need to be willing and able to remotely erase information stored on your phone in the event that it’s taken from you. This is a feature that all modern handsets offer, and is a great help in the fight against cybercrime.
Mobile phone hacking isn’t going anywhere as a trend, and so it’s our responsibility to educate ourselves and be cautious in how we use portable devices so we don’t get caught up in it.
Feature Image Source: Pexels