Keeping Your Tablet Safe

| November 19, 2012

Most people recognize the importance of protecting their desktop or laptop against spyware and viruses. But now that majority of tablets can do pretty much everything a computer can, security has become an issue. There are the usual risks: malware apps and the potential loss or theft of your tablet when you are out and about. Hackers are increasingly taking advantage of this lack of security awareness among consumers to steal their identities online. Most users remain signed in to their Facebook and email accounts on their respective tablets. Others even store sensitive information on their mobile device, like customer contact details and credit card information. So how do you ensure your tablet’s data is safe?

tablet security

Device lock. If your tablet is stolen or lost, device authentication (via pattern, password, pin) reduces the risk of data, connection, or application misuse. Most tablets have this feature, although enforcement and strength may vary. Think about how you should enable this on your machine.

Anti-theft features. A lot of tablets support remote data wipe or lock to prevent missing devices from misuse. There are even apps that you can download to track your device and take pictures of its surroundings when lost.

Anti-malware. Most tablets aren’t sold with on-board anti-virus, anti-spam, firewall apps or intrusion detection. Desktop security and anti-virus companies have therefore, already released versions of their security apps for tablets and other mobile devices.

Over the air encryption. Modern tablets secure corporate data, email and web with SSL or TLS, and Wi-Fi WPA2 via mobile VPN clients. The challenge here is to properly configure and enforce settings, as well as protect configs and credentials to prevent misuse.

Stored data security and protection. Mobile and hardware operating system support for data encryption varies for the most part, but there are protective apps that have been developed especially for tablets, to provide encrypted containers for data like contacts, calendars and messages. On its BlackBerry PlayBook review, The Verge reported Blackberry’s high security standards with regards to data security and protection.

The right device. If security is one of your top criteria in terms of buying a new tablet device then the BlackBerry PlayBook should be top of your list. According to a recent report released by Context Information Security, the BlackBerry PlayBook is the only device among top tablets reviewed that gives users a good and safe division between personal and work computing. The report also commended BlackBerry PlayBook for its Exchange ActiveSync, a feature that enables important security settings to be managed by Microsoft Exchange Server. In this review, the device as the most work-ready device (compared to the iPad and Galaxy Tab), because of its excellent support of barriers between personal and work profiles. Context also concluded that the PlayBook is the best device in the market today in terms of security solutions and offers the best BYOD readiness level. You can learn more about the device’s security and enhancement features in these BlackBerry PlayBook reviews.

Password protect. Context found the iPad to be the next most secure tablet, with its damage limitation facilities and robust data protection. It was still deemed pretty vulnerable to jailbreaks; however, the 1Password app rated highly as a great way to store and encrypt passwords into one master app. This means users are able to create and use different passwords for various accounts without having to remember them all – perhaps one of the safest and simplest ways for you to protect your data from phishers, scammers and hackers.

Category: Security

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  1. decroc says:

    what apps can be used to track a stolen tablets and to take pictures of its surrounding?