As a smartphone user, the online world is rife with threats to your privacy and security. Among the most vulnerable are Android smartphones, especially those drawing on older versions of the popular operating system. Studies show that nearly 90 percent of Android devices are insecure. These vulnerabilities are caused by the lack of security updates as many smartphone vendors still don’t roll out Google’s monthly security updates in a timely manner — if at all they do.
The Android Operating System is under constant attack. If you’re going to use your phone to browse the internet, you’d better be prepared. So, what can you do to keep your new Android phone safe from various threats on the world wide web? A lot, actually. The Android mobile operating system is very flexible. With the right security applications from Google Play Store, you can effectively ward off common privacy and security threats. New Android phone? Lay a good foundation with these apps.
A Virtual Private Network or VPN app is one of the most important device-security tools you can have in your phone. An Android VPN encrypts all your internet communication thus potentially protecting you from prying eyes. You can also use a VPN service to spoof your location. This is a trick that will allow you to bypass content censorship and geo-blocks, and is widely used to access Netflix and YouTube.
There are numerous VPN apps in the Google Play Store. However, not all Android VPN apps are not created equal. By using a VPN service in your Android device, you are placing a lot of trust in the service so it’s important to know how much it collects from you, not just how well it works. Take the time to understand whether a VPN is exposing you to online threats, injecting your device or browser with ads, or selling your data to third parties.
We are all aware of the perils and disastrous consequences of viruses and other types of malware on our personal computers. Well, times have changed and many computing tasks that hitherto took place on PCs can now take place on a smartphone or tablet. As a result, malicious threat actors are now using malware to target our smartphones. Luckily, there are plenty of antivirus apps on the Google Play Store to help Android users protect themselves against the rising and constantly evolving malware threats.
There are tons of ways to catch malware on your Android device. Heck, you can even download malicious apps straight from the Google Play Store. These applications can be copycats that bear the same name and icon as the genuine apps masquerading as helpful utilities thus tricking the unsuspecting user into downloading malware into their smartphones. Sadly, the Play Store filter is only weakly armed against malware uploads.
From devastating ransomware trojans to the merely annoying adware that will just show you unwanted advertisements, there are many types of malware that can infect Android smartphones and tablets. Malware infection in your Android device, irrespective of the type of malware, can have serious consequences on your privacy and security. Installing an antivirus application on your new Android phone can help you defend against these adversaries.
But not so fast. A 2017 survey by AV-Comparatives found that more than two-thirds of the 250 antivirus apps tested are not effective. According to the company, Symantec, Trend Micro, AVG, Avast, McAfee, Kaspersky, and Bitdefender performed well in the survey. Therefore, Android users need to a little picky with the vendors they choose to entrust with the security of their smartphones and tablets.
Password Manager App
Having strong, unique passwords for all your online accounts is one of the best ways to protect against online threats. But when you have multiple online accounts on different sites, remembering the password for each one can be a tough job. Fortunately, there’s a wide variety of password manager applications on the Android platform. These applications make your life easier by managing your passwords with an additional layer of security. Apps such as LastPass help Android users store all their sensitive data in one place. Users only have to remember the LastPass password, an encrypted master password.
App Permission Manager
Some Android apps are known for being invasive. You can use an Android app permission manager to block permissions of such apps. This can be a very useful tool when dealing with installations that require unnecessary app permissions. You can use an app permission manager to block permissions that don’t have anything to do with the main functions of the application. For instance, you can revoke the permissions of the flashlight app if it wants to collect location-based data. App Ops is one of the most popular Android app permission managers. Get the app from the Google Play Store for free.
File Encryption App
A VPN service encrypts your internet traffic to keep snoopers from accessing your private communications. But what about the files in your device? File encryption apps can help you encrypt sensitive files on your Android smartphone or tablet before moving them to the cloud. Since you are the only person that can access and read the encrypted files, you can also choose to store the files on your device. Crypt4All Lite (AES) is one of the most popular Android file encryption apps, and it’s free.
Your Android smartphone probably has some sensitive data on it. Smartphone data is increasingly becoming a target for hackers and other online malicious threat actors. If you use your Android smartphone to access the internet, you need to ensure that you are fully protected from malicious threat actors. These apps will help protect your new Android device from a variety of online security and privacy threats.