We’ve been talking a lot about security recently, whether antivirus software is necessary for Android, and what app permissions really mean. But security risks don’t just happen within the software, when you are seen walking around with an expensive smartphone you can become a potential target for theft. With this in mind, we asked users how they secure their Android device, and here is what we learned...
Of course, "fingerprint scanner", "face unlock" and "knock code" were at the bottom. Knock code has been popularised by the recent release of the LG G3, but it’s yet to become widely adopted, and fingerprint scanners seen on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s are perhaps viewed as too gimmicky. Some users say they change their unlock code/method often, which probably makes sense more for online passwords than smartphone unlocks, but I still think it’s good practice.
Here is the full results table:
The highest scoring answer on our Android security survey, with a surprising 38% of the votes, was that users DON’T protect their smartphone at all, affording anybody easy access to their private data. If this is true, or representative of the wider demographic, then it’s a very worrying statistic. Your unlock code is the one defense standing between you and identity theft. In the event that someone does take your smartphone, not only will you have lost your expensive and precious handset, but somebody will be able to access and potentially abuse your pictures, videos, messages, and personal files. Not just that, but some apps (like the Amazon app) provide you with the option of saving your payment details to make transactions quicker. People could order anything they wanted from online stores providing you have the money in your account to pay for it, and by time you cancel your cards it may be too late.
It’s sometimes easy to forget, when we are surrounded by so many of them, how important each and every smartphone is. If you aren’t smart enough to keep it out of reach of potential thieves (though I hope you are!), at least be smart enough to put a security lock on it.
- Scared of losing your Android phone? Here's how to use Android Device Manager as an anti-theft tool
What do you think of these results? Do you think security locks are necessary?