International Mobile Safety Tips
The STOP. THINK. CONNECT. campaign is working with its international partners to continue global collaboration on mobile security education and awareness.
For the second year in a row, STOP. THINK. CONNECT. has collaborated with international partners to release International Mobile Safety Tips.
STOP. THINK. CONNECT. has partnered with the National Cyber Security Alliance and our international counterparts at Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security, and the Organization of American States to develop this year’s tips.
The International Mobile Safety Tips were released on October 30, 2014 to mark the 11th year of National Cyber Security Awareness Month in the United States and the 5th annual Asia Pacific Economic-Cooperation Telecommunications and Information Working Group (APEC-TEL)'s Cyber Security Awareness Day. The tips also align with existing Cyber Security Awareness Month activities that occur in the United States, Canada, Europe, and other countries every October.
The goal of the campaign is to use harmonized messaging to reach out to mobile device users across the world and to provide them with core principles and simple tips to help people of all ages enjoy safer and more secure use of digital devices and the Internet. These tips have been updated to reflect the rapid advances in technology and security considerations that have occurred over the past year.
International Mobile Safety Tips
The first step is to STOP. THINK. CONNECT. Take security precautions, understand the consequences of your actions and enjoy the benefits of the Internet.
Keep a Clean Machine
Just like our desktop computers, the software on our mobile devices (e.g., laptops, smartphones, and tablets) must be kept up-to-date and free from malicious software. Unclean or unsecured mobile devices face a greater risk of exposing personal data.
- Protect all devices that connect to the Internet. Laptops, smartphones, tablets, gaming systems, and other web‐enabled devices all need protection from viruses and malware. Ensure all your devices have the latest protections installed.
- Keep software current. The best defenses against malware, viruses, and other online threats include having the latest mobile security software, web browser, and operating system.
- Know the source of your app. Fraudulent apps often masquerade as popular products. Be sure to verify you are downloading the legitimate app and only download from trusted app marketplaces.
- Do not "jailbreak" your mobile device. Running non-standard apps will prevent the installation of security updates from the manufacturer and will also likely void your device warranty.
Restrict Device Access
Mobile devices contain a significant amount of personal information, such as contacts and saved login information. Lost or stolen devices can be used to gather information about you and, potentially, others.
- Secure physical access to your device. Be aware of your surroundings when using your device in public.
- Lock your mobile device. Use a strong passcode or passphrase, facial recognition, or fingerprint authentication to assist in restricting access to personal information on your device.
- Think before you app. Understand and be comfortable with what information (i.e., location, your contacts, social networking profiles, etc.) the app would access and share before you download it.
- Clear data on your old devices. Erase all your personal data before selling, exchanging, or disposing of your old mobile device.
Connect with Care
Exercise caution and use common sense when connecting to open/public Wi-Fi networks.
- Get savvy about Wi‐Fi hotspots. When using public Wi-Fi, limit the type of business you conduct and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your phone.
- When in doubt throw it out: Links in email, posts and texts are often the ways cybercriminals try to steal your information or infect your devices.
- Be mindful of what is at-risk. Open networks are vulnerable to monitoring, allowing user information (browsing history, passwords) to be collected. Connect to trusted, secure networks as they provide unreadable (encrypted) transmissions or use a virtual private network (VPN).
- Be mindful of remote connectivity: Disconnect Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, near field communication (NFC), or other remote connectivity services when not using them.
- Protect your $$: When banking and shopping online, check for web addresses with "https://" or "shttp://" which means the site takes extra measures to protect your information. Sites beginning with "http://" are not secure.
Be Web Wise
We can all take steps to keep ourselves safe and secure online. Understand the steps to take to stay safe online.
- Stay current. Keep pace with new ways to stay safe online. Check trusted websites for the latest information and share with friends, family, and colleagues to encourage them to be web wise.
- Own your online presence. Set security and privacy settings so that you are comfortable with the information you share and to block those that you want to keep form having contact with you.
Be a Good Online Citizen
Being safer online makes the online world more secure for everyone. Practicing good online habits benefits the global digital community.
- Share about others only as you would be comfortable having them share about you.
- Never give out anyone else's personal information (e.g., email, social media handle, mobile number) to a third-party without that person’s permission including photos and videos.
International Online Safety Resources:
Organization of American States
Download the iZ HERO Mobile Safety Tips Poster