10 Ways for Employees to Secure Their Mobile Devices

Find out how employees can do more to fight cyber threats by securing their mobile devices

Rolling lockdowns have forced radical changes to how we work, with large sections of the population working from home for the first time ever.

For many this may go on to be a permanent change and for others a hybrid approach will be likely –  businesses must address the security implications of collecting hundreds of personal devices to the corporate network.

  1. Use a password / passcode

Every smartphone and tablet has the option to apply a passcode or password to gain access – and most now force device owners to use them. Encourage your employees to choose strong passwords which are harder to guess than 4-digit passcodes.


  1. Keep the operating system updated

Apple and Google release periodic operating software updates to address bugs and security vulnerabilities. Staff should be instructed to keep their devices updated as regularly as possible to reduce risk of compromise.


  1. Keep apps updated

As with operating, so with apps. Updates should be applied quickly to fix security vulnerabilities. You could also consider asking your team to set their devices to automatically update, streamlining the process and reducing the chances of an upgrade being missed.

  1. Install anti-malware

Anti-malware is an essential aspect of PC security, so why not mobile devices. Mobile antivirus can detect infected apps, personal data breaches and suspicious activity on-device and should be used by your remote workers to protect themselves and your business.


  1. Use a VPN

If you don’t already do so, remote connections back to corporate systems are protected by a VPN connection to prevent interception by hackers. Employees can further improve their device security with a VPN subscription that encrypts all traffic, personal and professional, from their smartphones and tablets.


  1. Sandbox apps

Segregating apps between work and play can help to prevent corporate data being leaked; one app for work emails, another for personal for instance. For more robust protections, consider deploying sandboxed apps to your mobile workers that create an impenetrable virtual barrier between work and personal software and files.


  1. Enable device tracking

A lost or stolen device containing IP or personally identifiable information could be a serious embarrassment if compromised. Use the device tracking feature built into iOS/Android to ensure you can locate and recover the missing smartphone.

  1. Only download software from official app stores

Third party app stores have fewer checks and balances, sometimes allowing malware-infected apps to slip through. By encouraging employees to only use official apps stores (Google Play or Apple’s App Store) you can reduce the risk of downloading viruses onto their mobile phones.


  1. Avoid unsecured public WiFi networks

Unsecured WiFi networks are easily compromised for use in man-in-the-middle attacks. Train your staff to be careful of any WiFi networks they use, particularly when on the road. They can further protect themselves with a VPN connection.


  1. Enable remote wipe functionality

If a device is lost or stolen, remote wipe functionality prevents hackers from recovering the data stored on it. Simply log into the relevant web portal and follow the instructions to delete everything. Your employees should also consider enabling the options that will format a smartphone immediately if the wrong passcode is entered too many times.

Applying common sense


These 10 tips will go a long way towards helping to secure your users’ mobile devices. Most can be implemented at little or no cost and will be vitally important as your remote workforce continues to grow.

To learn more about building a remote working strategy and securing your employees’ phones and tablets, please get in touch.