A common fault of smart phone parents is that they often abandon their phone in a public place. It’s just a phone, right? Whether to charge the phone in the corner of a restaurant or “save a seat” at the movies, we’re all guilty of phone abandonment.
This is a very unsafe behavior. Your phone can easily be stolen in these situations. Next time your device needs a charge, consider charging it when you are within a five-foot distance of it. Or perhaps you ask a restaurant waitress to sit you beside a power outlet.
I snapped the image above at a busy Starbucks in Atlanta. The owner of the orphan phone was outside with friends for almost five minutes before returning. Note that the offender’s purse, that probably held less value than the smart phone, was safely taken outside. Smart phones cost roughly $400.00 to replace and house super important personal data.
1. Charge your phone at home and in your car
2. Secure the phone in your purse or pockets
3. Set up a lock code on your phone (in the worst case scenario of theft, this can protect your personal information)Read more
Every year, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) publishes a report stating which online tech companies are protecting your personal data. This 2014 EFF picture shows exactly how companies safeguard your information, and areas in which they are falling short on user protection.
The safest choice is to center your online activities around the companies that provide the most protection and simply avoid (or limit) doing business with the companies that do not offer proper protection.
Click here to see the website or download a PDF version of the full 2014 EFF results graphic and summary, Who Has Your Back? 2014: Protecting Your Data From Government Requests.
Compare the 2014 results to the 2013 results. See how your favorite businesses have changed privacy policies and how the list has grown.
Tech blog Engadget has a helpful easy-to-read explanation of the 2014 EFF results as well.Read more
Researchers have discovered that home and small-office wireless routers are being hacked regularly and more than ever. Since early 2014, 300,000+ home devices were reported as infected. These are common household devices, such as Apple AirPort, NetGear, and Linksys routers. Attackers are able to modify these devices to access your personal wireless network and conduct malicious activity.
What this means for you:
1. Hacked systems significantly lower the speed of your Internet connection
2. More expensive power bills as Internet use increases
3. Your Internet service provider (ISP) may disconnect you due to “criminal activity”
• Update the software on these devices at least once per year
• Protect home wireless devices by using a firewall
• Buy a new wireless router
Note: If your router is more than three years old, it’s simply not able to provide the best protection. The safest choice is to purchase a new one. My recommendation is this Linksys Wireless Router.Read more
Recently, criminals have gotten crafty and made software that locks your computer and demands a payment of $300.00. The hackers do this by implying you have done something illegal or they simply lock you out of the system.
A 2012 Symantec survey found that so-called “ransomware” extorts an estimated $5 million a year from users of PCs, and a new version is charging $300.00 to unlock your Android phone.
1. Download directly
2. Use your backups to restore
3. Do not pay money
Click here to read full arstechnica.com article with technical details.Read more