A Clark School study at the University of Maryland discovered that a hack happens on average every 39 seconds, and that was back in 2017. That number is constantly changing for the worse, especially when you consider that hacking grew by 11% between 2018 and 2019.

The threat of having your phone hacked has become a common and rational fear. The cold hard truth is that it is now possible to hack any phone. There are many different ways a hacker can get into your phone and steal personal and critical information. Here are a few tips to ensure that you are not a victim of phone hacking.

Beware Of Public WiFi

Public Wi-Fi networks may be convenient to use and have become the norm, but hackers may be able to view your online activity while you’re browsing on these unsecured networks. If you have connected to the network previously, then your smart phone may automatically connect when you are not even aware.

This information can be used to hijack your personal accounts or steal sensitive information. In a public space, restaurant, or even your favorite coffee shop, the hacker may be sitting right next to you, and watching your every cyber move. Never access your financial accounts on a public Wi-Fi network!

Avoid Public USB Charging Stations

Although the charging system is offered as a courtesy and is convenient, cybercriminals have figured out how to implant malware into charging cables, and how to hack into USB charging stations in shopping malls and airports. Be sure to bring your own charging cable and power adapter.

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Encrypt Your Device

Encrypting your cell phone can save you from being hacked and can protect your calls, messages, and critical information. To check if a device is encrypted: iPhone users can go into Touch ID & Passcode, scroll to the bottom, and enable Data protection. Android users have automatic encryption depending on the type of phone.

Install Antivirus Software

Regular antivirus apps can defeat common threats. They have to be regularly updated, just like any other app. Updates for apps and the OS both often include patches for recently-uncovered security issues. 

Turn Off WIFI And Bluetooth

It is fairly easy for hackers to connect to your phone using WIFI or Bluetooth, so turn them off when not needed because there is no warning when a hacker attacks you. If you fear being hacked in a public space, turning off your phone can block a hacker’s ability to hack you — this is an effective preventative method.

Consider Using A VPN

vpn and proxy

VPN creates a virtual encrypted tunnel between you and a remote server operated by a VPN service. All external internet traffic is routed through this tunnel, so your data is secure from prying eyes. Best of all, your computer appears to have the IP address of the VPN server, masking your identity. When your data reaches the VPN server, it exits onto the public internet. If the site you’re heading to uses HTTPS to secure the connection, you’re still secure. But even if it was intercepted, it’s difficult to trace the data back to you, since it appears to be coming from the VPN server.

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Making a point to understand how hacking works can help you practice security in your every day life. Know how to be prepared for being hacked, so that when it happens you can be on top of how to handle it.