How to protect your phone from hackers

Used for payments and daily activities, mobile devices need to be secured. How can you protect your phone and tablet from hackers? Read our mobile security guide below!

How to protect your phone from hackers

Mobile devices need protection just like computers

Think for a second what you use your mobile devices for. Shopping, online banking, photos, emails, messaging, and so much more. Unfortunately, all the sensitive data and activities involving payments make mobile devices potential targets for hackers.

There are many different ways criminals can steal valuable personal details and money by targeting mobile users. They can use stolen personal details for identity theft and account takeover. Your mobile device security needs to be ready to face

  • Mobile malware

  • Shady apps

  • Data leakage

  • Unsafe networks

  • Phishing scams

Luckily, you can protect your­self. Here are 5 things you can do to improve your mobile device security and protect your phone from hackers.

5 tips on how to secure your phone and tablet from hackers and online threats

1. Use anti­virus for mobile devices

Malware targeted specifically against mobile devices exists. While traditional computer viruses aren’t a threat to mobile devices, other kinds of malware are. Mobile malware can for example

  • Lock your device and require payment

  • Steal personal details sand banking information

  • Cause credit card charges

  • Send SMS messages to premium numbers

  • Install and uninstall apps

Malware typically gets on your device through unofficial appstores, unsecure networks, email attachments or malicious websites. Use a reputable antivirus app to prevent infection. Keep your apps and operating system up to date.

2. Avoid shady apps

While official appstores try to block malicious apps, occasionally some get through. Some apps exist only to get your data while offering little benefit. Accepting their terms and conditions allows them to get your data with your permission. Apps from unofficial appstores are not screened and can be basically any­thing.

While there’s no unambiguous way to tell a suspicious app, start by thinking what you use it for. If it’s not necessary, there’s no point in getting it. If it doesn’t work for you, delete it immediately. Consider what data you allow it to collect about you and to whom it goes.

3. Don’t give apps unnecessary permissions

Many apps and online services have serious security issues. Granting unnecessary app permissions can lead to data leakage. Same goes with giving too much personal information about your­self to services. If it’s online, there’s a chance it can be stolen. Always consider what permissions you grant to apps and what personal information you give to services. Why do they need it?

You can also protect your phone from hackers by switching off Blue­tooth and Wi‑Fi when you don’t use them. These connections can be used for attacks. Keep your location switched off as well when not needed, so no app can track you with­out your knowledge and consent. This way your battery also lasts longer.

4. Secure Wi‑Fi connections with VPN

You can never know if a public Wi‑Fi network is safe. Every­thing you do through unsecure Wi‑Fi can be intercepted by malicious actors on the same net­work. Unsecure Wi‑Fi net­works can also be used to deliver malware.

A very good way to improve your mobile security is to get VPN for your mobile device. With VPN, you can use public Wi‑Fi safely. VPN greatly improves your privacy online.

5. Don’t open suspicious links

Phishing scams are more effective on mobile devices. Due to the smaller screen space, most email apps show only the name of the sender, not their address. Mobile devices are also used on the go, which makes it easier to fall for phishing scams.

Don’t open suspicious links. Check the email address of the sender. Remember, no reputable company or authority will ask for personal information through email or SMS. If you receive a suspicious text message, check if it’s safe for free with F‑Secure Text Message Checker.

F-Secure Total

Do you want to protect your phone and tablet from hackers?

F‑Secure Total includes VPN, antivirus, and pass­word manager that greatly improve your mobile security. Get all the mobile protection you need in one convenient package.

Try it for free for 30 days, with no credit card required.