In comparison to the cellphones we used to carry around with us, the smartphones we use now have advanced significantly. Instead of being called “mobile phones,” these gadgets are more accurately described as minicomputers that store a tremendous quantity of personal information, such as contacts, images, movies, and other documents. Furthermore, you may find yourself hooked on apps that contain banking information, credit card information, and other sensitive information. If someone were to get their hands on all of that information, what do you think would happen to them? Given the fact that 70 million smartphones are lost every year, this is a legitimate cause for concern.
One of the most effective ways to keep your information safe is to never have anything vital on your phone, which is practically hard to achieve. Encryption is the second-best solution after that. The fact that you have encrypted your device means that the information contained on it is unreadable by anybody else than you. So you can keep it from being used for nefarious purposes such as extorting you with images of yourself, using your credit card information to make transactions, or utilizing your personal information in identity theft. Anyone attempting to gain access to your information would have a difficult time doing so because your phone is encrypted. In the majority of circumstances, it would just not be worth their time.
Without a doubt, if your gadget does end up in the wrong hands, you’d like to have the confidence that your information would be protected. The steps to encrypt your iPhone, Android phone, or Windows Phone will be covered in this post, so read on!
Instructions on how to encrypt your iPhone
Apple, on the other hand, makes things relatively simple by incorporating encryption into its operating systems. In other words, all you have to do to encrypt your iPhone is put a passcode on your device. In the event that your device gets into the wrong hands, the third party will require your passcode in order to decode the information contained within the device. This covers anything from contact information, photos, and calendar information to call logs, text messages, and emails, among other things.
Instructions on how to set up or modify your TOUCH ID and PASSCODE
The following are the procedures to take in order to encrypt your iPhone by configuring or changing your Touch ID or password:
- To set or modify your passcode, navigate to Settings > Touch ID & Passcode if you haven’t previously done so (or Passcode for older devices).
Touch id and passcode are required.
- If you’ve previously created a passcode, you’ll be requested to input it again. You’ll see options for when to use touch ID, as well as the opportunity to add multiple fingerprints, on the screen that appears after that. It should be noted that even if you have touch ID enabled, you will still require a passcode. The backup feature will also allow you to circumvent touch ID if desired…
- To the right of the Touch ID settings are the options to Turn Passcode Off and Change Passcode, respectively. If you choose the latter option, you will be required to input your old passcode if it has been previously set up.
- Then you can design a new passcode for yourself. Because the number keypad is displayed by default, it is tempting to believe that you are restricted to simply using numbers. In contrast, if you click on Passcode Options, you’ll notice that you have the option of selecting from Custom Alphanumeric Code, Custom Numeric Code, or
- 4-Digit Numeric Code.
passcode with a touch
The most difficult passcode to crack will be an alphanumeric passcode with more than six characters in length. This does, however, necessitate the use of two different keyboards when inputting your passcode, which may be an annoyance for some users.
Alternatively, you can scroll to the very bottom of the Touch ID & Passcode page, where it should state “Data protection is activated,” to validate that the data on your iPhone is encrypted.
Keep in mind that even though the data is encrypted, Apple used to be able to retrieve some information under specific conditions, such as when a law enforcement agency made a request. However, for smartphones running iOS 8.0 and later, this is no longer an option because “Apple does not possess the encryption key,” according to Apple.
THE DELETE DATA FAILSAFE SHOULD BE ENABLED
A useful feature integrated into the most recent versions of iOS is the option to delete all data on your smartphone after 10 failed passcode tries. This feature is only available in the most recent versions of iOS.
Touch ID & Passcode may be turned on by going to Settings > Touch ID & Passcode and scrolling down to the bottom of the screen. You’ll find the Erase Data option in this section, which can be toggled on and off with a single click.
Warning: Enabling this feature will completely wipe out all of your data, so make sure that you have a backup of everything before proceeding. Additionally, if your phone is in the possession of young children, it is not a good idea to use this feature. It’s astonishing how addictive the “game” of punching numbers and watching those small circles fill up can be for a three-year-old, and it may cause you a lot of trouble if you have to wipe your device clean.
MAKE A BACKUP COPY TO ICLOUD
While moving your data to the cloud may appear to be a risky move, it is actually a wise decision. As part of its backup security, Apple encrypts the data in its backups so that it can only be viewed with your Apple ID and passphrase. This is distinct from the previous passcode and is the one you would use to perform actions such as logging into your online account, purchasing premium apps, or making in-app purchases.
If your device is ever lost, stolen, or destroyed, having a backup of your data makes it much easier to recover your information. In a few simple steps, you may take a manual backup or configure your device to back up to iCloud on a daily basis:
- Make certain that you are linked to a wifi network. 2.
- Go to Settings > [name (yours)] > iCloud > iCloud Backup and confirm your selection.
iCloud backups are available.
- When your device is linked to a wifi network, you may activate automatic daily backups of your data by toggling the iCloud Backup button. In order to perform a quick backup, select Back Up Now from the Backup menu. You only need to make sure that you remain connected to WiFi until the backup is completely completed.
ITUNES BACKUPS ARE ENCRYPTED
iTunes backups provide an additional method of storing data on your device. You can learn more about the differences between iTunes and iCloud backups in Apple’s documentation, but one of the most significant distinctions is that iTunes backups are not secured by default, whereas iCloud backups are. However, there is the option to encrypt them, and by doing so, you open up the possibility of backing up information that would normally be prohibited, such as health information, passwords, and browser history.
When you connect your device to your Mac or PC, you must enable the Encrypt backup option inside iTunes before you may do so automatically.
Instructions on how to encrypt your Android phone
Some Android devices are comparable to Apple offerings in that they are automatically encrypted when a passcode is entered into the device’s security settings. Others, on the other hand, are not, and some of them can be encrypted manually.
YOUR PASSWORD MUST BE CREATED OR CHANGED
You can set a PIN, a pattern, or a password if your device comes into the first category of automatically encrypting data. If your device falls into the second category of automatically encrypting data, you will only have the option of setting a passcode. It’s important to note that selecting the swipe option for your screen lock (where you simply sweep your finger over the screen to open it) does not provide any type of protection in the form of encrypted data transmission.
The following are the methods to create or modify your password:
Please keep in mind that these instructions are for Pixel and Nexus phones and that they may differ somewhat for other Android smartphones.
- Select Settings > Security & Location > Screen lock from the drop-down menu.
- From here, you can select the type of screen lock that you want to utilize (PIN, pattern, or password). A long alphanumeric password will provide the greatest level of protection because it will be more difficult to crack than something simple like a four-digit PIN. It’s important to note that if you’ve already established a screen lock, you’ll be required to input it before reaching the selection page.
- You can then proceed to set your new screen lock by following the on-screen instructions.
In addition, you have the option of changing your screen lock settings by selecting the settings button next to it on the home screen. Power button locking, automatic lock time, and a lock screen message are some of the features available.
To take advantage of the fingerprint sensor on newer Android phones, go to Settings > Security & Location and pick Pixel Imprint or Nexus Imprint from the drop-down menu. In the case of other Android devices, this may just state Fingerprint or something like that. When it comes to Android devices, a fingerprint must be used in conjunction with another security feature, such as a PIN or a security pattern.
MANUALLY ENSURE THAT YOUR DEVICE IS ENCRYPTED
If you have an older device, such as a Nexus 10 or an earlier model, it will not be equipped with encryption as standard. The manual method of encrypting it, on the other hand, is quite straightforward, albeit time-consuming. Before you proceed, you must determine whether or not it is worthwhile, as there are certain disadvantages.
First and foremost, encryption can degrade the performance of a phone and lead it to take significantly longer to boot up than it would otherwise. Apart from that, the encryption may not be totally impregnable, as Android phones have been found to be vulnerable to freezing cold boot attacks. (See also:
In the end, if you need to undo the encryption, you’ll have to perform a factory reset, which will result in the entire loss of all your information. Therefore, regardless of the device you’re using, you should always make a complete backup just in case.
The following are the general procedures for encrypting your Android device if you decide to go ahead with it:
Take note that this could take more than an hour to finish, so make sure you have plenty of time.
- Charge your device by plugging it in – if your battery isn’t fully charged or if the device isn’t plugged in, the encryption option will be unavailable.
- Select Security & Location from the drop-down menu.
- You’ll find the option to Encrypt the phone under the Encryption section (or Encrypt tablet). Select this option and carefully read the information that is presented.
Choose Encrypt phone from the drop-down menu and input your PIN, pattern, or password before pressing Continue.
- Once again, press the Encrypt phone button, and the encryption procedure should begin. Each time you turn on your phone after that, you’ll be prompted to enter your screen lock PIN, pattern, or password.
Encrypt the SD card on your computer.
In order to avoid having to encrypt your device, another option is to exclusively save confidential information on a secure USB drive or encrypted SD card. Some Android phones include the option for users to encrypt their SD card directly from their handset.
To do so, go to Settings > Security > Encrypt external SD card and follow the instructions. Depending on your preferences, you will be able to choose which sorts of files are encrypted, such as photographs or videos.
Once the card has been encrypted, it will no longer be readable by a conventional card reader. SD card encryption, on the other hand, is reversible, unlike device encryption. In the sense that you’re less likely to lose data, this could be a good thing, but it does make the system significantly less secure.
Instructions on how to encrypt your Windows Phone
Encryption of your device or SD card will be available if you are using a Windows Phone that is running Windows 10 Mobile on it. To protect your phone’s operating system, as well as any data and folders you save on it, Windows uses BitLocker encryption technology.
ENABLE DEVICE ENCRYPTION ON YOUR DEVICE
In contrast to the more recent versions of iOS and Android, the encryption feature in Windows 10 Mobile is off by default, while it is simple to enable when necessary.
The following steps will show you how to enable device encryption on your Windows Phone:
- If you haven’t previously done so, you should set a PIN for your phone right away. To do so, navigate to Settings > Sign-in options and click on Add under PIN (optional).
- After that, navigate to Settings > Update & Security > Device encryption.
You’ll see a toggle button on the Device encryption page, which you can easily switch to the on (right) position. 4.
ENTER THE PASSWORD FOR YOUR SD CARD
Windows Phones using the most recent version of Windows 10 provide the same ability to encrypt your SD card as some Android devices.
For this functionality, navigate to Settings > Update & Security > Device Encryption and select it.
- Select Encrypt SD card from the drop-down menu.
Is it true that encrypting my device eliminates the need for a VPN?
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) encrypts all of the internet traffic that goes to and from your device and routes it through an intermediary server before reaching its destination. A virtual private network (VPN) serves two fundamental roles. Because no one can spy on your internet traffic because of encryption, you can feel secure. The fact that traffic is routed through an intermediary server allows you to spoof your location, which allows you to unblock geo-blocked content and circumvent country limits and restrictions.
For those considering a VPN for its security features, you may be wondering whether or not you will still require one if your device is encrypted in some way. The quick answer is that sure, it is possible. Device encryption, on the other hand, only encrypts the contents of the phone, not the data transmitted to and from it. Because your emails and texts will not be encrypted, your ISP, hackers, and other snoopers will still be able to see which websites you are visiting and what you are doing online. A virtual private network (VPN) is required in order to encrypt your internet traffic.