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How to Protect the Data on Your Android Device: 6 Tips

Concerns about cybersecurity have increased since Russia invaded Ukraine more than a month ago. Russian cyberattacks on some Ukrainian websites, notably the Ministry of Defense and two banks, were attributed by US officials even before the invasion.

There are no specific or credible cyberthreats to the US, according to the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, but hypothetical cyberattacks are more likely to target infrastructure. Everyone should be ready just in case, says CISA. Building a line of cyberdefense should begin with safeguarding your mobile device. Android users may protect their phone data by following these six steps.

Make sure the OS is current.

Your operating system can be patched to address known security flaws and issues. If you don't update to the most recent version, you and your device are vulnerable to security holes that could let hackers access your personal information. Some users may delay OS updates to avoid having to deal with buggy software up front, but waiting too long can damage your PC. What you should know about Android 12 is provided here.

The two-factor authentication setting

In the event that your password is compromised, two-factor authentication, or 2FA, adds an additional layer of security to your Android account. Once you've entered your password, 2FA sends a second message to a different device, asking it to confirm your login attempt. Although it takes a little longer to log in, the additional protection is well worth the extra time. This is how to enable 2FA.

Implement a password manager.

A password organizer can be useful if you're having problems memorizing numerous passwords and creating special passwords for each account. These tools can be used in conjunction with 2FA and have the ability to securely store passwords and pre-fill login pages. Additionally, they can shield you from phishing schemes that ask for your password on a fake website. Visit CNET's reviews of the password managers Bitwarden, LastPass, and 1Password for additional details.

Secure your Android device

Google started requiring manufacturers to make Android smartphones encrypted right out of the box in 2015. Once your device has been encrypted, all of the data on it is protected by a PIN number, fingerprint, pattern, or password that only the owner of the device knows. Even Google cannot open your device without the key. You may learn how to encrypt your phone here.

Take your info out of Google

Since Android is a product of Google, unencrypted device data may be kept on a Google server. You can ask Google to erase any personal information it may have on you after checking to see whether it has any. Even while the process can take some time, it's worthwhile because if your data isn't present in the system to begin with, it can't be stolen. You can request that Google erase your information here, while Google does not promise that it will comply with your request.

Delete your phone if everything else fails.

You can remotely wipe your phone in the event that it is lost or stolen. You may get a walkthrough for this procedure in our guide to Android settings. You should develop the practice of backing up your phone on a different device if you have any data on it that you want to save as this deletes all of the data from your phone.

Check out these eight privacy-protecting apps for your phone for more information, as well as what information digital security experts wish you knew and how to stop your phone from following you.