Pay Attention To These 11 Security Guidelines For Smartphone Apps!

By | December 26, 2013
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Do you use smartphone applications for mobile banking and other personalized, official purposes? If yes, you should always keep in mind the app security tips discussed below.

Over the last couple of years or so, mobile apps have emerged as one of the most viable ways for marketers to promote their products/brands to prospective customers. While the increasing availability of user-friendly, easy-to-operate and engaging applications has been much to the liking of general smartphone-owners, risks of confidential personal data getting compromised have also gone up. That, in turn, has brought to light the importance of abiding by certain basic security norms, while using mobile applications. Here are eleven such critical tips:

 

  1. Do not use finance-related apps on public networks – Launching a gaming application in an wireless network environment is all very fine – but when you are using a banking or mortgaging app, you need to ensure that the connection is secure and encrypted. In general, using the network provided by your mobile service provider (via VPN) would be advisable.

  2. Avoid storing too much of data in phone apps – Security consultants from the domain of Android and iphone app development in India keep advising people to not use smartphone apps as virtual databases. Unless it is absolutely necessary, you should never store sensitive data (account numbers, passwords, etc.) in a mobile application. To protect the data that has been stored, don’t forget to use key-chains.

  3. Regularly check your handset for viruses – Presence of virus or malware in your phone can corrupt valuable data, and even make it accessible to others using the same network. You should have a reliable anti-spyware system installed in your phone, to stay safe from such threats. Make sure that the anti-virus settings are updated on a regular basis.

  4. Be careful during data transfer – You need to take a call about the type of data you are comfortable with, for sending along to others via smartphone apps. Most business and financial software come with secure app development graphics and encryption options – to rule out chances of unauthorized data access. Even so, it won’t be a good idea to transmit sensitive personal information via mobile applications.

  5. Stay aware of the latest security upgrades – To handle the data integrity requirements of users, every customer-oriented Blackberry, Android and iphone application development company in India comes up with regular security upgrades. Keep a tab on the releases of such advanced data protection software, and install the new versions – as and when they become available. If you are not sure about how the security software has to be set up, get in touch with a professional immediately.

  6. Be wary of mails seeking personal information – Unfortunately, there is no dearth of fraudsters going around in the mobile app markets – and they are invariably on the prowl to take advantage of the unsuspecting public, to gather their bank information and other such confidential data. If you get an email from an untrusted source, asking for your account details or balance information – delete it as soon as possible. Notify the app development company about it too, and unsubscribe from all unnecessary promotional offers. You don’t want to end up getting swindled!

  7. Use only tested mobile apps – Apart from the probable threats that can surface on the user-interface, an app can have bugs in its basic framework and backend architecture too. It is of essence that you download, install and use only such applications that have been thoroughly tested, and have valid security certifications. Apps with non-robust backend data protection systems should always be avoided.

  8. Do not lend your handset to unreliable persons – It might be on the pretext of one urgent phone call, that someone can steal valuable data stored in your apps. In case you do lend your handset to anyone else, make sure that all the applications are closed and locked first. If you are planning to sell off your old smartphone, uninstall all apps and erase the stored phone history.

  9. Log out from apps after every session – Even if no one else uses your phone, do not forget to actually log out/sign out of your user account on mobile apps after each session. Several contemporary mobile application development companies do offer applications with auto-logout systems – meaning that you will have to sign in with your username and password every time. It might take a few extra seconds, but you will be kept safe from undue data losses.

  10. Be alert about unusual activities – If someone does manage to breach through the security features of an app, you should be able to detect it at the earliest. While making credit card transactions via mobile, or accessing your banking app – keep an eye out for any unusual activity (in the nature of debits or credits). In case you do happen to identify any such unscheduled activity, report to the developers, and remove the concerned application from your phone.

  11. Have an idea about who can actually access your app-stored data – This is particularly important, if the app(s) you mostly use has backend data-storage facilities. If you know who can access/view your personal data, you will be at a better position to identify the culprit – in case there is any shady activity in your account. While transmitting data too, keep a list of the people/organizations with whom you are sharing such vital information.

 

While it sounds rather obvious, it would not be out of place to reiterate the importance of locking your phone – whenever you are not using it. Remember, each version of Android apps or iphone apps has its own list of security add-ons and requirements – and you need to upgrade your handset accordingly. Smartphone apps have, undoubtedly, made life a lot easier for people – but you can ignore the above guidelines only at your own peril!

 

Hussain Fakhruddin
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Hussain Fakhruddin

Hussain Fakhruddin is the founder/CEO of Teknowledge mobile apps company. He heads a large team of app developers, and has overseen the creation of nearly 600 applications. Apart from app development, his interests include reading, traveling and online blogging.
Hussain Fakhruddin
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