This content is part of the Essential Guide: Essential guide to laptop, desktop PC and mobile device strategy
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How to achieve secure mobile device management

Laptops and phones are critically important in the era of BYOD, but safety can only be achieved with secure mobile device management.

Keeping your mobile devices secure is more difficult than ever today, and it calls for secure mobile device management. Hackers and thieves have one thing in mind: Steal your personal information. While laptops and mobile phones are prime targets, there are simple and effective steps you can take to keep your information secure.

For secure mobile device management, every mobile user should have some version of antivirus software installed on their phone in order to prevent, detect and remove malware. Antivirus software gives real-time protection against threats as they emerge, but regular system scans are also recommended. This software should also be updated periodically to ensure you have the latest version available.

Mobile users should use encryption to protect data, such as passwords, media files and mobile banking information, on the device. With the data scrambled, if your phone is stolen, thieves will not be able to access your email, photos or any other personal information. This helps to achieve secure mobile device management.

With these security measures in place, users will be better protected against hackers, viruses and malware.

All mobile users should have a secret pin, or Touch ID for Apple devices, set up to unlock their laptops and phones, as well as adopt a two-factor authentication method for added security. With two-factor authentication, users sign in with something they know, such as a password; something they have, such as a code sent to their phone or email; or something they are, such as fingerprint or face recognition. This ensures you're the only person who can access your account, even if someone knows your password.

As always, choose strong passwords. Strong passwords usually include numbers, symbols and a mix of capital and lowercase letters. Don't choose a password that is too short or can easily be guessed. It is also recommended to frequently change these passwords.

Additionally, have the restraint to not download every app available. A report earlier this year showed how pervasive malware is in third-party app stores on the Android platform. To that end, users should only download apps from trusted sources and only when an antivirus program is already installed onto the device.

With these security measures in place, users will be better protected against hackers, viruses and malware. If a mobile device is lost or stolen, personal information will be unable to be accessed due to encryption and two-factor authentication methods. Every mobile user should follow the recommendations mentioned above for added protection.

Next Steps

Best practices for mobile device security

Training employees to protect mobile devices

Protecting mobile data

This was last published in December 2016

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