iPhone Security In the Mid/Post-Pandemic World
We are no longer just addicted to our iPhones; we are officially in a committed relationship, thanks to the pandemic. We mobile office from them, bank from them, attend doctor’s appointments, kids’ classes and Zoom happy hours from them. And in the midst of all of this critical and effective use, we are dropping our guard when it comes to iPhone security.
But there is good news! Changing your default privacy and security settings keeps you from being shark bait (because hackers usually go for the easy kill). Even for iPhone users, who often mistakenly believe that all security is taken care of by Apple. Spoiler – it’s not. Smartphone security takes mindful tweaks on your part – even if Apple does a good job of rooting out malicious apps. Here is a short description of what steps I would take first to to defend your phone (other than never losing it).
Too much reading? Check out the webinar – in less than an hour I’ll walk you through HOW to do it all for less $ than an Apple dongle!
iphone Security Webinar: Wednesday, June 24 @ 1pm ET
Course Description: iPhone Security – See Below (Note: Android OS will not be covered)
The Lucky 13 – iPhone Security & Privacy Tweaks
- Prune Your Apps. You have far more apps on your phone than you use regularly. Outdated and extraneous apps are a backdoor into your privacy. Delete those you don’t use often (Apple can help automate this) and reinstall when needed. Before you install a new app, find trusted reviews online to determine the company’s privacy and security record.
- Auto-Update Your iOS. Turn on automatic updates for your iOS operating system so that security patches are installed immediately upon release. This protects you from something called zero-day exploits, which I will explain as I demo how to turn this on during the webinar). Safari is part of the operating system, and just as vulnerable to hacking as on your computer, making these updates even more critical.
- Hide Your Location. Your flashlight app (not the Apple one) may be spying on you.Third-party apps often request access to iPhone features and data they don’t really need, like your location, camera, contacts, and microphone. Turn off location sharing on most apps, and set it to “Only While Using App” on most of the rest. Bring your app-specific location questions to the webinar.
- Hide Your Contacts, Photos & Conversations. Many apps have access to your contacts, calendar, photos, Bluetooth, microphone, camera and health data. Customize these settings to only allow access to apps that you trust or that have to have access to work.
- Robustify Your iPhone Passcode. Four digits is not enough! Six-digit numeric codes are still vulnerable to cybercriminals. Even if you conveniently unlock your iPhone with a thumbprint or facial recognition, the passcode behind the biometric is what gives it all of its strength! Lengthening codes is a bit confusing, so I will save it for the online demonstration.
- Password Manage Your Online Accounts. Mobile password aggregators help you create unique, long and strong passwords for all of your online accounts. The iPhone integrates with many common password managers to make logging in to critical sites faster and safer than the old fashioned way. Happy to make “endorsement-free” product recommendations if you need them.
- Double Your Passcodes. When you turn on two-step logins (aka, two-factor authentication), a hacker’s ability to break into your online accounts plummets. Having a passcode you know (the one you memorize to get into your phone) and a passcode you have (from a passcode authenticator app or text message), makes you exponentially safer. Enable this on every cloud service you use, from email to banking, health sites and business logins to social media. And make sure you turn it on for iCloud, which stores a backup of everything on your phone.
- Backup Your Phone. Whether you back up to a physical computer or to iCloud, this is the best way to recover from ransomware or a lost, stolen or hacker-scrambled phone.
- Stop Brute Force Logins. If you’re worried about your device falling into the wrong hands, you can prevent an attacker from brute-force break-ins using the “erase data” option. This automatically deletes all data on your phone after 10 consecutive failed login attempts. Just don’t ever forget your code, and be careful that your kids don’t erase your data by entering the wrong code too many times!
- Shut Down Eavesdropping Advertisers. Many websites use cross-site tracking to monitor your surfing habits so that marketing companies and advertisers can push products and services tailored to your interests. This can be turned off in Safari for iOS. It is also possible to block pop-ups, enable fake website warnings, disable location-based and interest-based ads and switch from Google’s search engine to a more private source like DuckDuckGo.
- Enable Location Tracking and Wiping
- Secure Your Free Wi-Fi Hotspots (VPN)
- Disable Creepy Photograph Tracking
If you are looking for a bit of hand/phone holding, join my webinar, where I will walk you through HOW to implement all 13 iPhone Security Steps.
Every website you visit, location you frequent and app you use on your iPhone can be tracked, hacked and abused. By default, your smartphone is open to cellular providers, digital advertisers and cybercriminals. Until, of course, you proactively take steps to minimize how your private data is being captured, shared and sold.
In this iPhone-specific workshop, John will perform a live demonstration of 13 critical iphone security and privacy settings. Bring your iPhone to the webinar, as you will be actively changing settings during the presentation.
Smartphone Privacy & iPhone Security Tools Covered Will Include:
- App pruning and vetting
- Operating system patches and automatic updates
- Limiting location tracking performed by Apps
- Keeping hackers out of contacts, photos and voice recordings
- Hack-proof passwords (almost)
- Implementing a password manager
- Turning on two-step logins on vital online accounts
- How to back up your phone in case of loss or ransomware
- Eliminating brute-force logins
- Disabling advertising tracking and sharing
- Enabling location tracking and wiping in case of loss
- Installing and utilizing a VPN to protect Wi-Fi usage
- How to disable creepy photo location tracking
If time permits:
- Evaluating of the Pros/Cons of biometric passwords (fingerprints and facial recognition)
- A discussion on the security of Apple Pay and Wallet options
- Banking and investing vulnerabilities on you smartphone
By the end of this webinar, your iPhone will be 99% more secure than the average smartphone user. Time for Q&A with John will be provided at the end of the demonstration.