Computer And Phone Security For Beginners

Computers

There are some basic precautions that you can take to protect your PC, laptop or even tablet.

First is to make sure your operating system is always up to date, the providers of operating systems allow for regular updates and these will cover a lot of the basic security problems.

Password protect; it is a good idea to make sure your system is password protected, especially if you regularly use wi-fi networks, this does give a higher level of access to your system, make sure the password is as complex as you can manage, avoiding the obvious ones, such as your name.

Install a good anti-viral and anti-malware software, companies such as AVG and Norton offer good packages, although there are a lot out there, pick something reputable, they will also offer regular updates on their packages making sure you are fully up to date.

Be careful when opening emails and, especially, their attachments. If you are unsure about the attachment or who it is from, don’t do it, the same goes for links in emails as well. Finally, be careful regarding the websites you visit, there are some nasty ones out there.

Mobile Handsets

A lot of the basic precautions regarding mobile handsets are the same as for the computer.  Things like regularly updating your operating system, making sure that you have an anti-viral on the phone, most companies that offer PC antivirals also offer mobile versions.  Just make sure you install a good one.

There are a lot of other things that your mobile phone can be subjected to though.  This most worrying for most people is theft; they worry that have spent all this money of a nice new handset and forget all the personal information on it.  Depending on how you use it, you personal details, banking, list of contacts, travel information and so on could all be on there.  So, password protect, of course, lock the phone when you don’t use it.

Make sure that you note the IMEI number, this is a fifteen digit number which identifies your phone and if the phone is stolen, your network can block it. You can also mark the handset itself with UV inks and there are several sites where you can register your handset. None of these steps will it stop a theft, but it will make it easier to get your phone back.

On the software side, as with the computer, be careful what you download, most malware and viruses are attached to downloads, only buy from reputable stores and most operating systems have recognised stores.  Don’t open email attachments or links from SMS messages unless you know and trust where they are coming from.

Be careful with your Blue Tooth functionality, if you are not using it, switch it off, this is an easy way for a hacker to get into your handset.

There are other things you can do, especially for your data storage, for example, you will usually have the option to save data, whether photography, music, calendars, documents and so on, on the phones datacard, this, of course, can be removed for safe storage if you so require.