Protect Your Mobile Device – Part 4

This is the last article explaining logical measures every user may take to protect his mobile device.

Protect your Data

The best protection for your data in memory is not to store any of them in your mobile device.

The second choice is encryption. Encryption helps to protect your stored data. You may either encrypt all files in memory or only selected files. Your emails may be protected as well. Some operating systems have these functions already built-in. Depending on the operating system of your device different settings are required. For selective file and email encryption you may need specific software available from recommended app stores.

For data in transit other protection measures may apply. See chapter “Use only Trusted Networks” of previous posts for more information.

Prior to sending in your smartphone for repair delete all your data and remove your SIM and SD cards. The same applies if you sell your mobile device.

File sharing

Use restricted private file sharing only for private files!

Block corporate file sharing via unsecure networks like Wireless Local Area Networks (WLAN), public file sharing platforms or social networks.

For corporate file sharing ask your IT manager what platforms and apps are trustworthy for your organization.

Data Backup and Restore

The easiest way to backup your mobile data (emails, contacts, test files, presentations, images, videos, etc.) is to copy them to your SD card. Move your SD card to another device and import your data. SIM card readers allow the backup of data stored there, too.

You may use synchronization services to backup emails, calendar or other information. Check in detail what data your synchronization services will backup and protect. What happens to your corporate files, private images, videos and much more?

Another way to backup and restore your mobile data is to interconnect your mobile device to a desktop computer via USB cable (delivered in the box or you have to buy a specific one) or BluetoothTM. Obtain backup software of your mobile device manufacturer or another source (not recommended) and install it in your computer. Then transfer files directly from your mobile device to the logical drive at your desktop computer or restore them from there.

Your corporation may offer backup and restore services from central IT department or via specific cloud services. Ask your IT manager for these services to backup your corporate mobile data.

For backup and restore of private data only you may use public cloud services like Dropbox, Google Drive, SkyDrive or others. Encrypt your data before you start your backup to protect from unauthorized reads or writes.

The manufacturer of your device or your mobile network service provider will offer backup and restore services as well.

Social Networks

Corporations want to prevent users from private use of social networks like Facebook, Google+, Tumblr, Twitter, Xing, LinkedIn, Orkut or others during their working time.

If the mobile device is managed by a mobile device management software the manager may try to block all social network services.

Additionally ask your corporation for offers of some kind of awareness training helping you and your colleagues to understand the security issues and concerns associated with the use of social networks and give some help how to use the social network services more securely.

What do you think? Tell us your thoughts and opinions. I appreciate your comments!

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Ronald Schlager is independent trainer, consultant, author and blogger with main emphasis on communications technologies and their applications.

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