Does it bother you when people watch as you type on your smartphone or computer? Now imagine some app recording every keystroke you make on your smartphone. Then storing it and sending the log to a cybercriminal.
This is what keyloggers are, and they are much more common than you realize. But there are plenty of ways to shut down hackers before they steal your data. Here are the six best ways to protect your smartphone against keyloggers and other digital threats.
1. Remove Suspicious Apps
Do a quick inventory of apps on your phone. Are there any you don’t recognize or look suspicious?
Keyloggers are often disguised as apps, and removing them can be as easy as deleting the app. The same thing can even go for apps you do use. Low-security apps are a frequent target for hackers who use them to gain access to users’ smartphones.
2. Use a Password Manager
The most important thing you type on your phone is your login credentials. There’s no better way to reduce the consequences of keyloggers than by not typing your username and password every time you need to log in. Password managers allow you to do this.
With an iOS password manager, you can store your passwords and other sensitive information (e.g., credit card numbers) in an encrypted vault. Anytime you need to login, you either use the app or tap the login boxes to have your credentials auto-filled for you. It’s the perfect combination of security and convenience.
3. Restrict App Access
Anytime you grant an app access to your keyboard, you may be consenting to a keylogger. Cybercriminals aren’t the only ones who use your data. Big companies may also record what you type for their purposes.
Go back through your apps and limit keyboard and background data sharing to only what’s essential.
4. Keep Your Smartphone Up To Date
Updates are much more needed than you realize. Sometimes they include fun and exciting new features. But most of the time, they install vital security patches that your phone needs to keep your data safe.
Hackers are always exploiting weaknesses in operating systems and apps. They use such vulnerabilities to implant keyloggers and other malware. You may not even realize that something is wrong.
Enable auto-update on your phone to ensure everything stays safe from these kinds of threats. At the same time, keep an eye on tech news. Companies often discover “zero-day” threats for apps that need a patch but haven’t received one yet. It’s best to avoid these apps until developers release a security update.
5. Change Your Passwords
Even when you do everything right, it’s still possible for hackers to find ways to steal your passwords. So when you frequently change your passwords, you keep ahead of many security threats.
With a password manager, it is easy to do as well. You can generate a new secure password and backup and sync across all your devices. For your most important accounts, changing a password every 2-4 weeks is the best choice for enhanced security.
6. Scan All Files Before Downloading
Anytime you download a file to your smartphone, you risk installing a keylogger or other malware onto your phone. It is particularly true for email attachments and apps outside of official app stores.
Malwarebytes and VirusBarrier are two examples of secure file scanning apps you can use on your smartphone. They include antivirus and antimalware tools to create even more comprehensive security.
The same also goes for visiting suspicious websites. Make sure all the sites you visit use the HTTPs protocol or have been verified safe before your browser opens them.
Bonus: Two-Factor Authentication
Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) enables another level of security for your accounts. It uses OTP codes via email or SMS message to double-check whether it’s you logging in. 2FA also notifies you of a login attempt and its location. So it’s an excellent and easy-to-implement layer of security that you should add to all your accounts.
Watch Out For Keyloggers
Keyloggers are one of the worst forms of malware. Fraudsters use them to target your online accounts and steal sensitive data. But you can follow strategies from this article. They will help to prevent keyloggers and different types of threats to your digital security.
It goes without saying that nothing guarantees 100% safety in the online world. Still, these steps minimize your chances of becoming a cyber-victim. They also reduce the harm hackers can do to you. So empower yourself and start implementing them today.