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5 Ways to Secure Data on Your Phone

5 Ways to Secure Data on Your Phone

Our mobile phones and portable devices reveal a lot about us. If it were to fall into the wrong hands, someone could see the most personal things. From our saved favorites and bookmarks on web pages, to the emails we send/receive, and even the apps we use! This small, but vulnerable, piece of technology knows everything that makes us who we are. Interestingly, we have stopped trusting our family and friends with this personal stuff and started trusting the mobile phones. Although this goes without saying, I would caution how much trust we put on these devices. The simple fact is, most of us do not even have our phones password-protected because of the inconvenience and time it takes to unlock the screen. As more function and updates become available on our devices, we must ensure we protect its privacy and security. How do we do it? Let’s find out!

1. Use an Anti-Virus Software

Viruses and malware are the biggest threats in the digital age. They not only give you a hard time working on your gadgets including mobile phones, they also lead to loss of personal information. A modern day virus program is written in a way that it not only destroys the data on your phone but it can leak your important personal stuff like social security number, credit card information, browsing history and your photos to name a few. Thus, installing an Antivirus is not only recommended, but an utmost necessity.

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2. Remote Wiping and Anti-Theft

In the case of mobile phone theft, the first thing that you should be doing is remotely locking your phone and wiping its memory to prevent loss of information. The latest phones have this feature built into them from the factories and if you haven’t explored it yet, you should probably look into it. This feature allows you to access your phone remotely through the internet, wipe all the data on it and then lock itself on its own with a hard-to-crack password. While this may not help you with getting back the phone, it can surely help you erase your private data.

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3. Preventing Unauthorized Access

Your phone cannot be near you all the time. There are situations when you have to give up your phone and stay away from it. However, this is no reason why your privacy should not be guarded. The best solution in such times is to install an app locker and password-protect your media files and applications. An app locker is a simple application that provides a means to lock your personal stuff and prevent unauthorized access to these things. A next generation app locker like Hexlock goes a step further and gives you many settings and options to safeguard yourself. Fingerprint unlocking, Uninstall prevention, and Parental controls are just a few of the benefits these types of programs can offer.

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4. Install Only Trusted Apps

Most of the mobile users do not realize the fact that apps are the new method of data theft. While the official marketplaces like iTunes and Play Store ensure that no malicious or dirty, tricky apps go live on their marketplace, not every source of apps is this secure. Most of the marketplaces or websites do not even care about your security, leave alone implementing it. Thus, staying away from untrusted sources and reading the reviews before installing any application or game is highly important. Any app that asks for the access to your bank account or credit card should always be on your security radar. Another thing that you should note is the app permissions box. This pops up just before you install any app. If you see unnecessary permissions, deselect it!

5. Secure Your Network

If avoidable, never ever connect to a public network or an open Wi-Fi because once connected, you can be an easy victim. Even if you connect, refrain from making any money related transactions or logging into bank accounts. Doing so might compromise your banking details and eventually give you a financial blow. While using a VPN could protect you and secure your data being sent, I do not feel confident over a public network especially if the VPN service (software) is open/free. Encrypting your data is very important nonetheless!

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Last Updated on February 15, 2019

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

Joe’s Goals

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    Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

    Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

    Daytum

      Daytum

      is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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      Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

      Excel or Numbers

        If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

        What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

        Evernote

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          I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

          Evernote is free with a premium version available.

          Access or Bento

            If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

            Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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            You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

            Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

            All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

            Conclusion

            I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

            What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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