Majority use smartphones for internet access

iPhone and Android are the most popular smartphones to have, with over half owning one of these devices.

BlackBelt SmartPhone Defence has revealed the results of a social networking survey.
Using Facebook as a channel and host for gaining respondents, participants were asked a series of questions regarding their smartphone, and how they use it.

Four out of five people canvassed are accessing the internet from their smartphone, showing just how valuable this mobile media is becoming. No longer is there a need to sit at a PC and spend time searching; now one can do that on the move, and keep up to date with what is happening in the world of social networking.

Mobile banking is increasing in popularity, with 1 in 3 accessing their bank account from their smartphone. With the introduction of near field communications, (NFC) enabling payments by mobile in shops and stores, and the ability to shop online via m-web, using the smartphone may again replace traditional services. This is in addition to the smartphone being an email source, camera, alarm clock, radio, PC, TV, GPS, plane and train ticket device, and more.

Asked if they had PC Antivirus protection over 92% guarded their computers from malware and hacking attacks. However, 1 in 3 people were not aware that a virus can infect their smartphone and almost half were not aware they should be protecting their smartphone from viruses. As the smartphone is able to access the web, can be used to check emails, and for social networking, antivirus protection is a must for savvy smartphone users.

Almost half of those surveyed were not backing up their data or contacts information, exposing their vulnerability should they lose or damage their smartphone – or have it stolen! Additionally, 60% did not have any lock and wipe software which would eliminate disclosure of private information in the event the phone fell into the wrong hands. This is particularly of concern to those 25% who confirmed that they are using their device as a business tool.

BlackBelt GM, Errol Finkelstein commented: “with the growing use of smartphone devices assisting and enhancing people’s online, business and social experiences, it is becoming increasingly clear that the security needs of users are self-evident, though the majority are still not fully aware of, or acting to counter the clear dangers.”

BlackBelt recommends:Always enable the PIN or Password access function on your smartphone; Install a comprehensive smartphone security software, much like as one does for every PC and laptop; Ensure that you have installed an ‘AntiTheft’ package, generally supplied as part of leading smartphone security packages, and know and how to use the remote data deletion and handset disable functions; Be very discerning in what Apps you install, and from what sources they are delivered – they may extract your data without your knowledge; Backup the data on your handset regularly – preferably automatically; Respond quickly to the prompts from your smartphone security service, watching for ‘dodgy apps’ and other challenges highlighted for your safety.

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