Lose your phone, not your data | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 21, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 04:18 PM, September 21, 2015

Lose your phone, not your data

If you are one of those unfortunate who has gotten mugged, I sympathise. Losing your phone, especially today when we practically live on it, can be difficult. But more important and valuable than your phone is the massive amount of personal data, pictures and files that is not at the hands of someone else. While there are steps you should take the soonest your phone has been lost to you, there are a few steps before hand that gives an extra layer of security which could make all the difference.

Screenlock

And by this I don't mean the swipe pattern. Put up a four-digit code, or better yet a strong passcode – something cannot be guessed just by staring at the fingerprints on your phone screen.

On top of that, add a SIM passcode as well. So when someone else turns on your phone, there are two layers of password standing between your data and them.

Encrypt

Most smartphones nowadays come with the option to encrypt all the data on the phone. iPhones encrypt the data as soon as your put a passcode on it-  for Androids, just head over to settings. Although encryption slows down the phone a bit, it also means, without the password, the only way to access the phone is to reset the device. In addition to that, you can also use 3rd party apps to encrypt your phone.

Remote delete

This feature will not be much help if the phone is kept turned off after it is taken, but it's better to be on the safe side. Android and iOS – both offer this, through which you can remotely factory reset the phone if it is connected to the internet.

Configure apps

Facebook, Gmail and Dropbox all offer two-step verification now. Use these. Backup data from all your apps regularly – if you do need to remotely wipe your phone, you would want to be able to get back some of it.

The above are things to do before – if your phone happens to get stolen, here's what you do. Access a computer and remotely lock out from all social media. If you use two steps verification, remember before hand to keep a backup set of codes printed for times like this when you don't have access to your regular phone number.

Next, call your network operator and block your SIM card. See if you can locate your phone through the remote services online – if not, just click on the option to remotely wipe.

Then you go to the police, hand them your IMEI number and drop down in prayer hoping that they find your phone.

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