Written and compiled by Kareem LaTouche and Stephanie Lyew
Tech question of the week
With the advent of book-reading technology such as the Kindle, online sources and applications, have you leaned towards these technological developments or still prefer hard copy?
Tiffany Naraysingh: I think many people will argue that there is a certain nostalgia for hard copy books. For me though, it is all about cost and convenience. I love reading books and magazines, which can get pretty pricey each month. When I got my Kindle as a birthday gift, I found myself spending less on these items. E-books are significantly cheaper, and oftentimes I can download free books on Amazon.com. It is also quite convenient to have access to my book collection no matter where I am.
How to secure your smartphone
Why you need to know
In the event you lose your smartphone or it somehow gets stolen, you will want to know that the data on the device is secure; from photos to personal information that may be stored or synchronised with the applications installed. You also want to know that the smartphone is protected from unwanted interference by third-party sources.
What you will need
- The smartphone
- Mobile security applications
- A computer
How to get it done
The first step in protecting a smartphone/mobile device is to enable password or passcode protection. Go to the phone's 'Settings' and select 'Security' options. Everything should be easy from there. Having password protection or even a swipe lock pattern on the smartphone doesn't necessarily mean that the device or information is secure from unwanted intrusion. Just as there are security applications, other applications exist to override the security measures taken.
Second, set up an automatic lock which is more effective if the timing is less than 15 minutes. The more time allowed for automatic lock gives an intruder more time to access or remove information from the smartphone. Between two to five minutes is the best option to select. This feature can also be found in the security settings.
Only download applications from the platforms' app stores i.e. BlackBerry, Windows, Android and Apple or from trusted app developers. Using certified applications means you are at less risk of someone stealing your information or identity. Take a look at the apps of the week, these security applications will assist in data protection among other features, such as locating a lost smartphone, virus detection and data backup, as well as remote data backup.
Tech problem of the week
Apps this Week for Android, Apple and Bb
Defense Shield for Android
With the recent updates on the Defense Shield application, formerly known as Mobile Defense, the user interface is easier to navigate to troubleshoot various Android issues. The app controls microphone levels, Bluetooth, phone and online accounts in addition to the data stored on the device, SD card and secondary cloud storage spaces. From the app server, http://support.mobiledefense.com/hc/en-us, the Android device can be monitored and remotely accessed. Defense Shield also comes pre-installed with virus-protection tools.
Find my iPhone for Apple (iPhone)
In order to utilise the Find my iPhone application, you will need to have another iDevice/Apple technology such as a Mac laptop or iPad. Install the free app on both the iPhone and the other Apple device. Once the phone is misplaced or stolen, the application will locate it; all you have to do is open the app and sign in with your Apple ID. Another feature that must be activated is the Wi-Fi or cellular data plan; this enables the app to locate the device on a map (using the phone's global positioning system i.e. GPS) and the user can select what he or she would like to do, whether remotely wipe information, lock the device and make it inaccessible to anyone. The latest version, Find my iPhone 3.0, requires iOS 7 and later as well as a cloud account.
BlackBerry Protect for BlackBerry
The correct version of the BlackBerry Protect application is automatically selected for users, once it is downloaded from the BlackBerry app store. If the BlackBerry device goes missing, visit www.blackberry.com/protect to locate the device on a map. The BlackBerry Protect app allows users to select a ring alert even if it is on silent, as well as display a message to instruct the individual who possibly found the Blackberry to return the phone to the owner's address. Assuming the phone is stolen, the app can also back up and wipe the data then shut down the phone.