However smartly, technology has managed to creep in and take over our lives, subtly and successfully. Your iPhone is like a book full of your secrets; the only difference is that you do not have a huge, scary monster protecting it. You rather carry it around, that too all the time!
Your contacts, messages, pictures, and bank account details that define YOU, the same mix of things that you carry around in your iPhone every day can be jeopardized. However, amongst the turmoil of data breaches every other day that even the big elephants in the industry could not stand, one is always on the brink of being vulnerable and exposed to the world.
Nevertheless. The point of stating this is not to make you go live in the woods. It’s just that, we suggest you take a few privacy-related steps to feel more secure in this time of risks and have one less vulnerability to worry about. Keep Reading!
It is no secret now, that a whole lot of mobile apps demand access to your location. They know if you are a resident of New York City or Long Island. Not just access, they keep updating the data, as much as 14000 times a day as long as your iPhone is connected to the internet, and sometimes sell it to third parties.
Staying connected to the internet can make you more vulnerable to such acts; for example, almost all internet providers in NYC have made their internet connections a little more secure. For instance, if you have subscribed to one of the Mediacom internet plans, you can vouch that they offer securer surfing as compared to public internet hotspots.
They keep monitoring your location information, accurate to the last yard and the marketers use them to design their campaigns around them. Weather apps are the most likely ones for you to fall culprit to.
To avoid unnecessary monitoring, go to Settings>Privacy>Location Services. You will see a list of apps that require or have access to your location information. Thoroughly scan through the list and turn off their access by changing it to “Never.”
In case an app legitimately requires your location like Uber or Google Maps, etc. Change the setting to “While Using the App” and never leave it on “Always.” This way the app will never be able to record your location data when you are not using it.
iPhone is Microphone
Go to Settings>Privacy>Microphone and see for yourself how an insane amount of apps have asked for access to your microphone. Considering that they don’t have anything to do with a microphone.
Make sure you get rid of any apps you think do not necessarily require access to your microphone. Do not worry if you overdid it, you can always go back and turn it back on.
Many apps like Snapchat always request access to your camera. Duh, who doesn’t want to try those cool new VR filters? This could be a fair reason to let the app access your camera. However, scrutinize other apps for their reasoning to seek access to your camera.
Go to Settings>Privacy>Camera and disable all the apps whose access to your camera doesn’t make sense or isn’t well justified.
Limit Ad Tracking
Ad tracking records your interaction with certain types of ads and predicts future ads you should be exposed to. All of this is based on new algorithms that can detect and process intent. This, in one way or another, gets annoying after one point.
Worry no more, go to Settings>Privacy>Advertising and turn “Limit Ad Tracking” on. Moreover, make your life a little bit easier by resetting the device’s “Advertising Identifier” and enjoy peace for some time until you have to reset it, yet again.
Turn Off the Live Photos
iPhone comes with the live photos feature in them, with that your iPhone recording 1.5 seconds before and after you click photos. As a result, you get a moment and not just a picture, with sound captured.
Many people turn on this feature without realizing it and leave it on, even when they don’t need it. One major pitfall could be, you can accidentally record and send a moment that otherwise you would not want to share with the receiver, like something offensive or more private.
This can easily compromise your reputation, so do not turn it on unless you need to capture a moment like that.
Researchers demonstrated at a conference that in the chain of hacking events, your voicemail is the most vulnerable one. Martin Vigo, a famous tech geek demonstrated how hackers could use your voicemail to change the security settings of a wide range of your online accounts. Vigo explained how he used a voicemail to unlock and change passwords for online services like WhatsApp.
For example, if you request a password reset on WhatsApp, you can opt for a call with your reset code. So, if you don’t pick up in time, the automated system will leave the reset code on your voicemail. Now imagine if your voicemail is not protected, the hacker can easily access that reset code and change the privacy settings of your account.
Now the question is how you’re going to fix this. One solution is to set a 9-digit password to access your voicemail. Go to Settings>Phone and select “Change Voicemail Password.” Now set a strong 9-digit passcode for your voicemail. This is going to act as another shield that a potential hacker might find hard to cross.
Lock Screen Message Previews
We all like to keep our digital conversations, private. However, we’re still struggling to manage it for every messaging app we use. Consider sitting in a meeting at your current job (that sucks) and one of your friends messages you to ask how your interview at another MNC went. Imagine this pops on your iPhone and one of your bosses sees it. This will put you in an awkward spot.
So to avoid such awkward and potentially dreadful encounters, make sure your notification settings are well sorted.
Under normal/default circumstances, the sender’s name and part of the message appear on the lock screen of your iPhone, as you receive a message. Worry no more, you can disable the message preview by going to Settings> Notifications and scrolling down to WhatsApp and Messages. Look for “Show Previews” and set it to “Never.”
By doing this, you can still see who the sender of that message is, but the message preview won’t show.
Try these seven simple steps and feel a lot less burden on your shoulders. Share your experience in the comments below.