Whether you’ve paid a handsome price for your Android smartphone or got it for next to nothing with your new mobile contract, I think you’ll agree with me that the data stored on your phone is at least as valuable as the device itself. With over 10,000 phones being stolen in the UK alone each month, you need to make sure you properly secure your Android device. If by the unfortunate chance your phone is ever lost or stolen, you’ll either be glad you took the proper security precautions to protect all your data, or you’ll definitely wish you had done so. In the next few articles, I’ll walk you through setting up Android’s built-in security tools and suggest how 2X MDM also plays a vital role in securing your Android device.
It’s vital to lock your Android phone as it prevents anyone that doesn’t have the passcode from accessing it. Android gives you two options – you can either enter a code on a keypad, or use the unlock pattern, which allows you to swipe your fingertip across the screen, connecting a series of dots along the way. The unlock pattern works in the same way as when entering your pin – if the pattern you swipe matches the pattern previously entered into the phones’ memory, the phone unlocks.
Lock Android Phone with Password or Pattern
To set your Android phone to lock, go to the Settings menu and tap Location & security. Select Phone lock settings and Phone lock type. You’re given 3 options; 1.) None, 2.) Password, 3.) Pattern. I personally prefer the password selection. Android 2.1 and up allows you to create passwords that are case sensitive and alphanumerical. Your password needs to be a minimum of 4 characters. To be on the safe side, it’s best to make sure your password is a minimum of 6 alphanumeric characters and making it case sensitive makes it even harder to crack. A password such as ‘1234’ is not, in any way, secure. Get creative with your password. Something like JAym3s79J is strong. If you’ve got a mind like mine, then chances are you’ll forget your new password – therefore, memorise it. Make sure it’s a password that no one else will think of and don’t write it down on a piece of paper stuck to your fridge door.
Once you’ve entered your new password, you will be prompted to enter it again. Once you have confirmed it, your Android phone will be locked.
If you fancy locking your phone with the pattern, select Pattern from within the Phone lock type section. Your pattern can link a maximum of 8 dots, although you can have a pattern that joins only 4 dots together. The more dots you join in your pattern, the more difficult it will be for someone to guess it, therefore, I strongly advise going with an 8 dot pattern.
Once you’ve got the pattern you want in your head, begin drawing your new unlock pattern by touching your finger down on any dot on the screen and then swiping your finger over nearby dots to connect them in any pattern vertically, horizontally, or diagonally. It may be tempting to simply connect four dots in a simple L shape, but in doing so, chances are that your phone could be accessed by the first person who tries his luck at your pattern. As is the case, convenience and security don’t always fall hand in hand, and selecting a difficult pattern is definitely one of those cases. If you’re intent on really locking your phone, don’t compromise on your unlock pattern or password.
Remotely Lock Android Device
Why would you remotely lock your Android phone? More to the point, how do you even lock it remotely? 2X MDM allows you to remotely lock all your connected Android devices – that’s smartphones and tablets, by the way. As well as being able to find and track your mobile device if it’s lost or stolen, the remote locking feature ensures that none of your information, be it business or otherwise, is exposed. Also, if you have forgotten your password or the pattern you saved, you can gain access to your phone by giving it a new one, which will save you the hassle of having to take it back to your store.
Businesses also use the remote lock feature if it’s brought to their attention that the device is being abused, or if the users are about to break their data-plan limit.
It’s so easy to remote lock your device. All you need to do is go to the 2X MDM online dashboard, click on your device and hit the remote lock button. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be asked to enter a new password. As a lot of companies reset their device lock passwords regularly, there’s even an option to send the new password to the users email.
Once the password has been reset, the Android phone goes into sleep mode. When reactivated, the user is locked out, unless they know the new password.
Take advantage of the advanced security features 2X MDM has to offer by signing up for a free account. Click here for a step-by-step guide on how to set up your account.
In our next article, I will show you how to remotely wipe as well as find and track your Android smartphone and tablet using 2X MDM.