The traditional way of coming home to access the internet, email and social media has gone out the window. While home based security is critical, it also needs to take into account your mobility.
Like a King who is relatively safe in his castle with its layers of security, once he leaves the castle, the security has to change.
At home one or two body guards are enough since they are behind short and high walls, a moat and maybe some other natural barriers. Out roaming the forest, it is only the security he brings with him that keeps the king safe. Like the king, you need to bring the right amount of security with you, and use some wisdom when using your phones, tablets, laptops et all outside your secure zone.
Stealing your photos may not seem like a big deal, however if they push porn into your photos it should be a concern, malware also steals your passwords, current location (are you home? Can I break into your house now?), financial data, emails et al.
For ideas on keeping your castle and home technology safe follow this link – http://www.theweeklygeek.com/category/security/
The first few things you should do, should be “common sense”, however, just in case no one told you, here they are.
- Never use a public open hotspot to shop or bank online. Intercepting signals via “man in the middle” attacks are relatively easy. Anyone within 300 foot of you could grab you log-on credentials and or credit card information from the “air”. A hacked system could do it for a “bad guy” in another country, just don’t do it.
- Use your own 3G or 4G connection instead of a free Wi-Fi hotspot.
- Disable any Wi-Fi and Bluetooth you are not using. I have blue tooth capability in my car, I turn my Wi-Fi off on my phone when I get in the car, I turn the blue tooth off when I leave the car. Is it inconvenient? No. Why? Because I made it a lifestyle, just like putting on a seat-belt. https://www.tomsguide.com/news/bluetooth-flaw-lets-hackers-track-windows-macos-and-ios-devices?utm_source=tg-newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20190717-tg&fbclid=IwAR3lJvEuzQH0Qfx5J63wZ4TVctk1P58wMTX55DQiFhDnMAo_DQU8TqTr4u8
- Don’t share your hotspot. A year or two ago, one of the phone companies was promoting, big time their hotspot device, if you share that in public, who knows who is getting on, using your data and your device to do whatever they please. Some things like that can end you up in jail. https://www.techdirt.com/blog/wireless/articles/20110425/11220014028/swat-team-raids-home-because-guy-had-open-wireless-router.shtml
- Only download Apps from the Google store or Apples iTunes, anywhere else should be considered dangerous territory. Google and Apple attempt to certify that no obvious malware is embedded in the App. Remember even their “protection” is not guaranteed. https://www.tomsguide.com/news/google-removes-stalker-apps-from-google-play
- Use passwords to log in your phone and any Apps that will allow it.
- Backup your phone. Most carriers and phones have it built in, you must activate it.
- Keep your phone, tablet and computers Operating system up to date, the manufacturers don’t make those updates for the fun of it.
You should also spend a little money on security. I use, actually our entire family uses, and recommend ESET’s Anti-virus https://www.eset.com/us/home/mobile-security-android/ and they have a Child protection software too – https://www.eset.com/us/home/parental-control-android/ We also use Malwarebytes on our laptops since they are “out in the wild” so often. https://www.malwarebytes.com/
We use one or the other on our phones.
Use a secure browser. Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge and others are not safe as is. You need to add on appropriate software the blocks possible malicious scripts and hacking. For example in Firefox I use “ghostery”, AdBlock Plus, No Script and WOT (Web of Trust). These “extensions” go a long way in keeping junk and bad guys out of my system. Yes, they can be inconvenient, but again, like a seat belt and using blinkers, making them a habit means they are my norm. Google Chrome has incognito mode, however some websites notice you are using it and prevent you from visiting them. Google is fixing that – https://www.tomshardware.com/news/chrome-76-prevents-incognito-detection,39987.html
Next, you could use a VPN. A Virtual Private Network works in one of two major ways.
The first is it connects your device to your home network and then out from there. This uses the security you setup at home (router) as well as appearing to the world as if you are accessing the internet from home.
A second way is just getting more affordable. It is a VPN service that supposedly encrypts your information on your device, goes through the public internet to their severs, decrypts and sends you on your way. These can make you more anonymous on the internet. I personally have only research experience with them, no practical real world experience. If you have experience with a VPN let us know in the comment box below.
I could go on for pages and pages, but that is not practical. If you have more questions feel free to ask below.
Until we meet again, have a virus free week.