Mobile safety

Privacy

Most Android phones produced after 2015 are encrypted by default.     Encrypted phones are legal in most countries and where there are restrictions they are generally kept to a minimum.     They say that if you have a banking app or credit card numbers saved on your phone, you definitely want to have your data encrypted.     Without it, a thief could easily access your finances.     Click icon to find out more.

In some situations, though, you may have to provide your phone’s password to the police.     See solicitor’s guide.

Catching cyber criminals

BBC Radio 4 programme Catching the kingpins: The hack outlines a police operation that hacked EncroChat’s encrypted mobile phones.     Their network was favoured by organised crime.    The aim was to enable police to read the criminals’ messages for weeks.     Click button to listen.27 mins

See also EncroChat on wikipedia.


Online safety on a mobile phone is comparable to that of a PC but you may have more personal information on your phone that would be valuable to criminals.

 Anti-virus

Do I need an anti-virus?     Click icon for a guide.     They say, mobile antivirus can help protect you against phishing scams, where criminals trick you into clicking a dodgy link and revealing your personal details on a fake website.     They compare the effectiveness of a number of options.updated

Google play protect security centre aims to keep bogus apps off your device, preventing malware and scams.      It is not entirely successful, though.      See review.

 Buying

Android phones are more likely to come with malware pre-installed than iOS phones.     Click icon for a few tips to help keep you safe.

Firewalls

PC firewalls are different to the mobile versions.     While PCs connect via broadband, mobile phones use cellular networks and Wi-Fi.

 VPN

A virtual private network, or VPN, gives you an extra layer of privacy and anonymity, so you can hide your internet activity and location to avoid being tracked.     Click icon for a beginner’s guide.       

There are two versions:  an app or a browser extension.     The second is simpler to install but only works on that browser, not on other web access such as apps.

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