As part of Cyber Security Awareness Month, here are some tips to help mobile computing users stay safe:
A lost or stolen device
Be aware that your laptop, mobile phone, or tablet PC could be lost or stolen. If that happens, all data on your device is vulnerable.
To mitigate the risks from a lost or stolen device, UIT recommends:
- Limiting the amount of sensitive data stored on mobile devices. If you don’t absolutely need it, it should not be there.
- Running Identity Finder on Tufts-owned devices to look for sensitive information.
- Using our free encryption application on Tufts-owned devices.
- Enabling the power-on password or other device password management tool if it’s available on your device.
- Configuring your laptop or mobile device so that it locks automatically after a prescribed period of inactivity.
Being aware of your device at all times to lessen the chances of losing it or having it stolen.
Operating system and wireless vulnerabilities
Security vulnerabilities exist at both the operating system level and over wireless connections. Just about every type of mobile technology has been found at one time or another to have a security vulnerability. Although there are some inherent risks in mobile computing, there are definitely things you can do to help prevent these types of vulnerabilities.
- Faculty and staff should contact their local support organization to install mobile security software, such as anti-virus software and firewalls on mobile devices. Free downloads of Command Antivirus are available for students and faculty/staff owned computers.
- Apply the latest security patches for your mobile device.
- Always upgrade to the latest version of the software if software upgrades are available.
- Think before granting permission requests to downloaded applications.
- Set up the remote data wiping feature if it’s available for your phone. That way, if it’s lost or stolen, you can remove any sensitive data. Blackberry has the best technology to do this, but Android, and Apple to a lesser extent, also have this capability.
Safely using your mobile device
Finally, when using your mobile device:
- Try not to leave your mobile devices unattended—even for a moment. Secure your laptop with cables and participate in Tufts Public Safety’s “Operation Identification ” program that engraves your property with your information, making it much harder for thieves to sell.
- Do not open or follow links in SMS/MMS or email from a questionable URL.
Do not download or accept programs/content from unknown or untrusted sources.
- Be cautious when using public Wi-Fi.
- When you dispose of your device, be sure to completely delete all data before giving it to someone else or recycling it.
For more information about mobile security, consult your local support organization or your FSP .