Secure Your Privacy From Hackers, Spammers & Advertisers!
If you use internet then believe me or not but you are getting tracked in some way or the other.
Now just for e.g. lets talk about the Advertiser ID which is secretly hidden in your phone and tracking you and your daily activities everyday. What? you don't about it? Well Surprise Surprise...! haha, don't worry just keep reading.
What is Advertiser ID?
Advertiser ID is a device identifier which is unique for every smartphone. It allows advertisers to anonymously track user's in-app activities, habits, and usages of applications and accordingly monetize their apps and services.
And that’s just one of many trackers. In reality your phone is nothing less than a treasure of information advertisers use to build a custom profile of your daily phone use to deliver targeted ads.
But then monetization is how the tech companies are able offer everyone so many cool features, useful apps and services.
Although you can not remove this ID, however Google does offer users the option to reset their IDs or even opt-out of personalized ads which don’t give apps their IDs.
How to Reset Advertiser ID?
To reset your Advertiser ID, simply go to your phone's Settings > Google > Ads > tap on Reset Advertising ID and then tap OK on the confirmation pop-up.
How to Opt-out of Personalized Ads?
If you don’t want your data to be shared with the app developers at all, you can opt-out of personalized ads which will stop your ID to be shared with advertisers.
To do this, again go to Settings > Google > Ads. And this time turn ON the Opt out of Ads Personalization option and tap on OK on the confirmation pop-up.
However, keep in mind that you will still see ads, but those will not be based on your interests.
If you think by doing this you have accomplished everything needed to keep your privacy intact then think again.
If you want to get serious about security, you have to go beyond the usual steps and be aware of some important security measures to keep your data and privacy secure.
At times during traveling when you notice your phone is running out of battery power, you often don't mind finding any nearby power source to give some juice to your smartphone.
The USB cable that you use to charge the battery in your phone is the same cable that is used to transfer and sync data from the phone.
With this habit of pluging in your phone with any public USB will allow a hacker to secretly install a malware on your device or steal information via the USB charging port if your phone is paired with a computer hidden inside a charging kiosk, it is known as Juice Jacking.
From iOS 11.4.1 onwards Apple introduced an option of USB Restricted Mode setting, enabling which, will help you prevent Juice Jacking.
How to Enable USB Restricted Mode
To turn on USB Restricted Mode on your iPhone, go to Settings > Face ID & Passcode > type in your passcode. Scroll down until you see the Allow Access When Locked section and under this section make sure the option of USB Accessories is toggled OFF.
Auto Erase Data
No one would want their important and sensitive data to be deleted from their phone. But then it would also not be a pleasant situation if your undeleted sensitive data gets accessed by a fraudster.
Thus enabling the auto erase option will allow your iPhone to wipe all data after ten failed passcode attempts.
How to enable Auto Erase on iPhone
Go to your phone's Settings > Face ID & passcode > enter the pass code.
Scroll to the end, and you’ll see Erase Data. Make sure the button is toggle ON to enable this setting.
To avoid having to loose your data in such a case, it is always a good practice to keep a backup of important files on cloud service.
Your smartphone makes you to password protect it by default which is indeed essential, but did you know you can do the same for individual apps?
There are times when your friend ask you for your phone to make an urgent call, or your kid wanting to play a game.
While you don't mind handing over your phone to your close ones, but you would also not want them to access some sensitive content on your phone other than doing their originally intended activity for which they asked to have your phone.
This is where iPhone's Guided Access feature comes in handy. It limits your Apple device to run only one app.
It provides access to all available controls and functions for a particular application, but does not give the user access to other applications installed on the device.
If you feel necessary you can even disable some controls on that 1 active app which is being run, before handing over your device to someone else.
With Android, you can easily achieve this app lock functionality with inbuilt features or could also take help from some third party apps. With an iPhone, your best option is to use the little-known feature called Guided Access.
How to Turn ON Guided Access
Go to your phone's Settings > General > Accessibility > tap on Guided Access at the bottom> now turn ON the Guided Access option
How to Use Guided Access feature
So when the situation arises for you to hand over your phone to someone else, and you want to make sure your friend has access to only one application which he asked to use, do the following:
- Open the app yourself which your friend wants to use
- press the Home button 3 times or the Side button 3 times (in case of newer models) this will open the Guided Access option
- Use one finger to circle the area of the screen that you don't want to be responsive to touch input.
- Also check the Options on the bottom left to turn off a few more settings and tap on Start on the top right.
And that's it you can now give your phone to your friend.
To turn off the Guided Access, tripple click the home or side button and tap on the End option on the top left screen.