Posted by Tim Luzadder, TCC Enterprise Infrastructure Director

As the holiday season approaches many of us will be buying gadgets and electronics for friends and family. No doubt you will spend time evaluating, reviewing, and deliberating over just the right purchase to make. We enjoy watching loved ones open these gifts and are usually roped into helping set them up. We should also take a few moments to recommend what changes to make to gadgets while we are helping out. Many default settings for devices are not concerned with security and privacy. Phones love to share location data, and several apps default to uploading every picture as it’s taken.

Take a few moments to help them protect these new devices:

  • Make sure they set up password security. Over half of American smartphone users don’t
  • If the phone has one, set up a SIM card lock in the form of a PIN number. This will be needed to connect to a network if someone takes a card and tries to use in another phone
  • Make sure Anti-virus / Anti-malware tools are running on that new laptop or phone
  • After helping download apps, go into the settings and specify which ones can use the microphone, cameras, and storage
  • Determine which apps really need location data
  • Set default Bluetooth configuration to “non-discoverable” to prevent phone from being hijacked
  • If appropriate, setup a backup schedule.  There are really good, inexpensive, internet based backup options for the price a Netflix subscription.As you are helping, don’t forget to review your own devices, apps, and settings.  Many are automatically updated and sometimes introduce new security features that default to something undesirable.  Be safe this holiday season and help others stay safe with those new gadgets.


To learn more about TCC’s IT Managed Services please visit our website

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