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How to Avoid Cellphone Viruses and Spyware

If you own a cellphone or smartphone, know about viruses and spyware vulnerabilities -- especially if you have an always-on Bluetooth connection.


  • TIP: Some security software may include a GPS feature that can track your lost or stolen phone's location.
  • Step 1: Protect your phone against physical theft. A thief could get access to your company passwords and network codes if your smartphone is used for business.
  • Step 2: Protect against threats common to PCs. Malware can attack smartphones with internet access via email attachments, websites, and social media sites. Take the proper precautions, and know that your phone is virus-free.
  • FACT: In 2004, Cabir became the first software virus designed specifically to infect mobile phones.
  • Step 3: Buy security software over the internet. Many programs can support phone operating systems like Windows Mobile, Symbian, and iPhone.
  • Step 4: Regularly clear your phone's memory. Some smartphones can be set to automatically clear the memory when locked or holstered.
  • Step 5: Shut off your Bluetooth connection when you're not using your Bluetooth device. Viruses and other cyber-attacks often target nearby phones with always-on Bluetooth.
  • TIP: Bluetooth-connected phones can signal nearby phones to accept an application. Malware installs when the targeted user accepts an infected application.
  • Step 6: Know your phone's security features. Some phones automatically lock after numerous password attempts. Others have a password-encryption feature.
  • TIP: If your phone doesn't have a password-encryption feature, consider using third-party password-encryption manager software.
  • Step 7: Know what viruses and spyware are. Viruses steal your cellphone's info or send pay-per-minute messages. Spyware secretly tracks web-surfing activities on your smartphone.

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