It’s funny to me that when having conversations about technology people still don’t see the parallel between their smartphone and their computer.
Today, smartphone are connected to the Internet and have much of the same information as the personal computer, if not more. Now Androids and other smartphones have become little mini handheld computers. Carriers are announcing that they’ll be upping the speed of the latest version of their networks, doubling download speeds. And new smartphones will have as much as 64 gigabytes of capacity. That’s more hard drive than my three-year old laptop.
For the next generation of users, the smartphone is replacing the PC as their primary device. Nielsen reports, “We are just at the beginning of a new wireless era where smartphones will become the standard device consumers will use to connect to friends, the internet and the world at large. The share of smartphones as a proportion of overall device sales has increased 29% for phone purchasers in the last six months; and 45% of respondents indicated that their next device will be a smartphone.”
For many of us, your mobile device has already become like your right hand (in my case, my left hand). Not only is it your phone, but it’s used to store some of your most private conversations and confidential information—it’s now your address/phone book, email, digital camera, news source, online banking system and even your wallet—all rolled into one device.
With all this invaluable data and information, and the growth in smartphones and tablets, it’s natural for criminal hackers to see these new devices as a huge opportunity, much like they did with the PC.
So if you have a smartphone or tablet, make sure you take steps to protect yourself.
- Never leave your phone unattended in a public place
- Put a password on your mobile and set your phone to auto-lock after a certain period of time
- When doing online banking and shopping, always log out and don’t select the “remember me” function
- Use mobile device protection that provides anti-theft, anti-malware/antivirus, app protection and web protection. McAfee makes this easy with McAfee All Access, a single software solution to protect all of your devices or you can use McAfee Mobile Security to protect your smartphone or tablet.
Robert Siciliano is an Online Security Expert to McAfee. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Mobile was Hacked! (Disclosures)