5 APPS TO PREVENT YOU FROM HACKING
The information age has birthed computers and smartphones. These tools have become so much a part of the human lifestyle that it is almost impossible to imagine that they were not always in existence. Not a single day goes by that the average human doesn’t use a smartphone. Smartphones today are more powerful than computers were three decades ago, and their versatility is greatly improved. It has been estimated that there are 2 billion smartphones in the world and these tools have become hardwired into our daily lives. Humans rely on these tools to perform their daily tasks and going a day without one’s device could be comparable to losing a limb. You would be surprised the number of people who use their phone to make credit card payments, shop online, book a taxi, order food, check their account balance, and perform other online banking services. Indeed, smartphones are boundless.
Mobile banking apps have become the norm, and cybersecurity threats have never been more fierce. Personal and financial information is needed to use these apps, and every user is a potential victim. The recent spate of malware attacks and system/software breaches has spurred people consciousness about the need to protect their devices. Companies have also been victims of cyber-attack that results in the personal data of their clients being leaked. These stories are all too familiar. Everyone is susceptible to hacking attacks. The people who hack are opportunists, thieves, or spies. These people are motivated by their criminal financial gains (by defrauding and credit card detail theft). Others want to gain credibility in the hackers’ community or are engaging in corporate espionage.
The Pew Research Center conducted a study in 2013 and deduced that 63% of mobile phone owners access the internet via their smartphones. Of this demographic, one-third of them seldom use their PC. The average mobile phone user checks their device about 110 times in a day. These phones can be used for almost every conceivable thing: from tracking shares, trading the stock market, to receiving a prescription. However, when compared to laptops and personal computers, smartphones are more susceptible to being attacked by a hacker. These devices are almost always on. They can be attacked more readily than a Laptop. Also, hackers have greater control over these devices and can infiltrate highly guarded environments unnoticed. It is no mystery why they are the preferred target for hackers.
An individual or a group of the individual could fit the description of a hacker. The average hacker seeks to exploit the weakness in software or network in an attempt to criminally gain access to your data, invade your privacy, and steal information. Most hackers are well versed in the security systems of various devices. A vicious hacker will stop at nothing to gain access to your data. Apple users and Android users are just as susceptible to this threat. User’s credentials can be stolen from browsers. You are only free from the chance of being hacked with you don’t visit any website and install any app on your mobile phone. But what good is a phone without these features? They are known to target email messages, text messages, banking and shopping apps, Facebook and other social media accounts.
So just what could go wrong if a hacker gets hold of your personal information or gain access to your social media account? What’s all the fuss about? Well, here’s what you need to know when your data gets breached.
- The hacker could lock you out of your accounts after resetting your passwords.
- The hacker could harass your contacts.
- You run a high risk of having your identity stolen, and having a criminal have access to your home address, and credit card details,
This is never a pretty experience. Protecting your data, privacy, and having peace of mind while you surf the web has not been more difficult. A large number of internet users do not adopt safe practices. The rule to use a different password for each website is not usually adhered to by most people. This leaves a good number of ways by which cybercriminals can hack a smartphone.
There are various methods of protecting your data. One approach is to set your phone to automatically erase all data from its storage after a certain number of incorrect login attempts.
You also get to save yourself future heartache when you download software only from your designated device store (Apple App Store and Google Play Store). Only install apps that are secure, trustworthy and reliable. Be extremely careful when installing apps from third-party sites. And checking the permissions of various apps on your smartphone to ensure they do not leave you open to attacks. A more serious approach is to install a mobile security application.
A mobile application is a software that runs specifically on small wireless computing devices like smartphones and tablets. It is known by many other names ranging from a smartphone app, app, to online app, and sometimes as a web app. This application software is designed to provide services very similar to those of applications on a PC or a laptop computer. The major distinction is that these apps have limited functionality and are small in size. These apps are tailored to the constraint of the device on which they will run. Five applications that can help you secure your phone from hackers have been detailed below.
This app is available for both Android and iOS users. It monitors your identity on various websites and helps to protect your private information from hackers and online fraudsters. It analysis sites like Facebook, Gmail, and Dropbox. All suspicious activities like unfamiliar login attempts from a new device or location are brought to your attention. This feature helps you stop an attack before it happens. It also drastically reduces the harm that you are exposed to in cases where the attack has happened.
LogDog can be used to target emails with sensitive data (such as credit card details and passwords), and you can delete such emails to prevent them from being accessed by the wrong person. The app doesn’t store the user’s password, email, and other personal information on its servers. The data is kept confidential. Users can connect as many accounts as possible to the app for protection. Each of this account is scan repeatedly for suspicious activities. User’s peace of mind has never been more guaranteed.
- NowSecure Mobile
Mobile phone users are often oblivious of the fact that some apps collect data from their phone. These apps can access call logs, location, calendar data, phone and email contacts. Other sinister software can open your phone up to be controlled by another person. Hackers have tools for detecting this software and can leverage on this to get unfettered to your information. A good number of this software are paraded as “spyware”. Hackers through this software can listen in on your phone conversations, steal files off of your device or look through private information.
The NowSecure Mobile App monitors your apps, phone network, and operating system. You are immediately notified there is a loophole that can be exploited. The apps that have questionable access to personal data and increase the device vulnerability are also highlighted. A device security score is generated by this app to gauge your threat susceptibility. NowSecure Mobile App also provides its users with tips on how to best secure themselves. The app is free and compatible with the Android and iOS operating platforms.
- Cloak 3.0
Cloak 3.0 allows you to connect to the internet via a public Wi-Fi without you worrying about you’ safety. Cloak integrates well with the phone and makes your web surfing experience very seamless. The app’s auto-secure feature makes it function autonomously. You only need to connect to any network, and the app goes to work. The automatic security that this app offer makes for a pleasant experience as users do not have to monitor the network themselves or run tests. Cloak recognizes the trusted networks and establishes a connection. The app also has a very user-friendly interface that makes the experience more fun.
- Clueful from Bitdefender
The amount of information retained by most apps is more than what an average app user will be comfortable with. Most people are just not aware of this fact. Now, free apps that come studded with ads are fast becoming the trend. Consumer data is constantly being gathered and archived by this advertisement companies. This data can be used in any way the company sees fit. Who is to say it will be used in your best interest?
Bitfender designed a free app-scanning service that assesses mobile phone apps and its user’s privacy relationship. The app, Clueful, ranks the phone’s apps based on how each app accesses and uses the user’s information. One other built-in feature of Clueful is the detection of apps that have malware or corrupted software. The app is compatible with the Android and iOS operating platforms.
This app helps provide insight on the apps that have certain permission enabled and make the device more susceptible to an attack. It gives a detailed analysis of each app behaviour. Users can know how vulnerable they are by means of the “Privacy Score”. Clueful help you fortify your mobile phone defence.
Public Wi-Fi should be avoided at all cost as they are less secured and easily intercepted. However, they are most times the most accessible internet connection option available to people. If you must connect to a public Wi-Fi, then you need to secure your data and personal information. Skycure was built just for this purpose. This app checks for breaches in wireless networks by running a test. The app is capable of detecting these dangerous networks and goes further to record the network location warning other individuals with the app. This prevents them from falling prey to these malicious networks.
Every security threat is analyzed by the sky cure mobile app, and the user is notified promptly. This app was built for corporations to protect their data but and has proven to be just as useful for mobile phone users. It has a very intelligent design. The model of this application is to predict, detect and protect users from the threat. The app is free and compatible with the Android and iOS operating platforms
In general, any intrusion into a phone, computer, or network that is unauthorized is considered to be hacking. A multitude of techniques are employed by the hackers for perpetrating this act, these include:
- Keyloggers: these tools take note of the keystrokes on the infected system and parse them to the hacker behind the scene.
- Password Cracking: this technique recovers user passwords.
- Packet Sniffer: this is a tool scours through data packets in search of passwords and data that is being transferred.
- RootKit: this program transfers the control of a system to a third party.
- Spoof attack: hackers copy original websites and try to trick users to input their data to access some feature. D
- Trojan horse: this technique opens a backdoor in any system allowing the hacker to have unrestricted access.
- Viruses: this is one of the oldest techniques for hacking. The hacker creates a self-replicating program that corrupts the system and destroys data.
- Vulnerability Scanner: the function of this tool is generic. It should assess the system vulnerability of the device. However, it has been reverse engineered by the hacker to snoop through the system for certain personal information of interest to the hacker.
In a time like ours the struggle to maintain our privacy, secure our data and personal information as we access the World Wide Web is all too real. The threats do not appear to become extinct in the nearest future. It will both be unwise and costly to deny our vulnerability to these attacks. It is best to take preventive measures ahead of time. The responsibility falls on every mobile phone user to equip themselves with tools to make them less vulnerable to cyber attacks of any forms.
Of a truth, the protection of your data, privacy and personal information is your responsibility.