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How to Secure Mobile Device

Best Practices: Securing your mobile device

Securing Android and iOS Mobile Devices

  • Update! - When operating system and app updates appear, be sure to take a moment to run those updates. They will contain security patches that are necessary to keeping your device up-to-date from the most recently discovered security flaws. 
    • To check if your system has system updates:
      • Android: Settings > About > System update
      • iOS: Settings > General > Software Update
  • Password Protect Your Phone - Fingerprint, PIN, Password, Face Recognition - For passwords and PINs, make them as long and complex as you can. 
    • To check if your system has system updates:
      • Android: Settings > Lock screen and security
      • iOS: Settings > Touch ID & Passcode 
    • (The Pattern lock screen is one of the least secure methods to locking your device. If possible, use an alternative lock method as listed above.)
  • Disable Wi-Fi - When not in use, disable your Wi-Fi to protect it from connecting to unsecured Wi-Fi networks and hotspots.
    • (Refrain from connecting to public Wi-Fi networks as much as possible, as well.)
  • Disable Bluetooth - When not in use, disable Bluetooth to prevent Bluetooth Hacking from occurring. 
  • Downloading Apps - When downloading apps, only download from trusted sources such as Google Play Store (Android) or the App Store (iOS)

Find, lock, or erase information on your Mobile Device

iCloud (iOS): Locate your device with Find My iPhone  

Find the approximate location of your iOS device, Apple Watch, AirPods, or Mac using Find My iPhone on You can locate your device if:

  • Find My iPhone is set up on the iOS device or Mac you want to locate

  • Apple Watch is paired with an iPhone

  • The iOS device, Apple Watch, or Mac is online

  • AirPods are out of their case and near one of your iOS devices. Any of your iOS devices can find the AirPods, but they must be paired with at least one of your iOS devices.

If you have Family Sharing set up, you can also locate a family member’s device. For more information, see the Apple Support article Share your location with your family. 

  1. Click All Devices. In the list, the dot next to the device indicates its status:

    • A green dot means it’s online. If the device can be located, you also see the time it was last located.

    • A gray dot means it’s offline. If the device was recently online, you see the time it was last located. If the device has been offline for over 24 hours, you see Offline.

  2. Select the device you want to locate. The name of the device appears in the center of the toolbar.

    • If the device is online and can be located, its approximate location is shown on the map.

      Note: If your AirPods are separated from each other, you see only one location at a time on the map. First, find the one shown on the map and put it in the case. Then refresh the map and find the other one.

      • If Find My iPhone can’t locate the device, the last known location is displayed for up to 24 hours. Select “Notify me when found” to get an email when it comes online.

    • Do any of the following:

      • Update the location: Click the green dot on the map, then click Refresh .

      • Move the map: Drag it.

      • Zoom in: Click the Zoom In button.

      • Zoom out: Click the Zoom Out button.

      • Change the map view: Click the current view, in the bottom-right corner, then click the view you want (Satellite, Hybrid, or Standard).

    • To locate another device, click the name of the current device in the center of the toolbar to access the Devices list, then select a new device.

    • You can also use the Find My iPhone app on an iOS device to locate your missing device. For more information, open the Find My iPhone app, tap Help, then go to “Locate your device.”

      Note: Maps and location information depend on data collection services provided by third parties. These services are subject to change and may not be available in all geographic areas, resulting in inaccurate or incomplete maps or location information.

Android Device

If you lose an Android phone or tablet, or Wear OS watch, you can find, lock, or erase it. If you've added a Google Account to your Android device, Find My Device is automatically turned on.

To use Find My Device, your lost device must:

  • Be turned on
  • Be signed in to a Google Account
  • Be connected to mobile data or Wi-Fi
  • Be visible on Google Play
  • Have Location turned on
  • Have Find My Device turned on

Tip: If you've linked your phone to Google, you can find or ring it by searching for find my phone on

Remotely find, lock, or erase

  1. Go to and sign in to your Google Account.
    • If you have more than one device, click the lost device at the top of the screen.
    • If your lost device has more than one user profile, sign in with a Google Account that's on the main profile. 
  2. The lost device gets a notification.
  3. On the map, see about where the device is.
    • The location is approximate and might not be accurate.
    • If your device can't be found, you'll see its last known location, if available.
  4. Pick what you want to do. If needed, first click Enable lock & erase.
    • Play sound
      Rings your device at full volume for 5 minutes, even if it's set to silent or vibrate.
    • Lock
      Locks your device with your PIN, pattern, or password. If you don't have a lock, you can set one. To help someone return your device to you, you can add a message or phone number to the lock screen.
    • Erase
      Permanently deletes all data on your device (but might not delete SD cards). After you erase, Find My Device won't work on the device.
      Important: If you find your device after erasing, you'll likely need your Google Account password to use it again.