Sep 20, 2021 | Updated: 07:19 PM EDT

Common Cyber Risks for Android Users

May 27, 2021 11:11 AM EDT

Common Cyber Risks for Android Users
(Photo : Pixabay) Common Cyber Risks for Android Users

Cybersecurity is becoming better with each new generation of Android devices. But while technological improvements do reduce cyber risk, they don't remove it entirely.

These are some of the most common cyber risks Android users need to be aware of - and how they can be avoided.

Unsecured Apps

Whether you're looking for a new home, embarking on a fresh fitness routine, trying to get better sleep, or just looking to kill some time with a fun game, there's an app for that. Unfortunately, many of these apps are unsecured, providing plenty of opportunities for hackers to poach data. Sync those compromised apps to your email account or social media and suddenly a lot of your personal information is at risk.

Google Play

In addition to vulnerable apps, Android users also need to be aware that some apps released on Google Play intentionally contain malware. It's easy for users to upload their apps to the Google Play platform, which makes it a great place to find apps you might not be able to source elsewhere. Unfortunately, it's also easy for those with more sinister goals to upload their malicious codes. You'll even find some malware presented as anti-virus software, meaning users are introducing the very thing they're trying to avoid when they install.

Out-of-Date Devices

Updating your device and installed software is crucial to maintaining good cybersecurity. This is especially true on Android devices where fragmentation is more pervasive than in iOS devices. Fragmentation occurs when different devices are operating on multiple operating systems, some of which are no longer supported. This leads to greater vulnerability and more access points for hackers to take advantage of.

How to Avoid Cyber Risks With Android Devices

There are lots of reasons to love your Android device, and there's no need to just accept that cybersecurity concerns go along with having one. Some small steps can greatly improve data protection and lower your risk of becoming a cyberattack victim.

Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN)

An Android VPN can help reduce the risk of cyberattack by creating a secure internet connection, wherever you're using your device. Data traveling through your device is encrypted and more difficult to poach. VPNs can be installed on both networks and devices and a good VPN provider will have options for multiple operating systems, ensuring all of your internet-ready devices are properly protected.

Install Only Trusted Apps

Apps are a weak spot when you're using an Android device. When installing apps, consider the reviews carefully and avoid accidentally installing options that look like well-known and respected apps. Remember that free apps can wind up costing you plenty - sometimes a paid-for app will be the better option.

Update Regularly

Stop putting off updates - for both your device and your installed software. Updates often contain security patches that address identified weak spots and leaving your apps and devices out-of-date can leave you vulnerable. Schedule specific times to check for and install updates to ensure you don't go unprotected.

Lower Cyber Risk and Get the Most Out of Your Android

A few small changes in your safety protocols can leave you happier with your Android device - and your sensitive data better protected. Update your safety protocols and you can get back to what you love about your Android, instead of worrying about what you don't.

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