The top security features for smartphones and their painful flaws

The top security features for smartphones and their painful flaws

Keeping your phone secure is one of the top priorities you must have in order to make sure that your private information and sensitive data doesn’t end up on the internet or in someone else’s hands. Even if your phone has been stolen, a smartphone should still have good enough security measures that the thieves could not access the information on the device, thus being forced to perform a factory wipe just to be able to use the handset. That’s not always the case unfortunately. In fact, it’s almost never the case, as the best available security features at the moment also have some crippling flaws that we just can’t get over. Let’s take a look at what phones use to protect users and why they’re not doing a very good job.

The password and PIN code

These are the most basic forms of protection and represent the way in which people have been guarding their digital belongings for decades now. It all seems great, you put in a combination of numbers and letters that only you know, and no one else would be able to access the phone. That’s not really how thing go, however, because today’s technology allows hackers to use software al algorithms to try out millions of combinations in a matter of minutes. It’s just a guessing game at this point and it’s only a matter of time before they crack the code. It’s even worse when the user isn’t really creative with their passwords and choose something like their day of birth or “password123”.

Facial recognition

When this first appeared on the market on select smartphones, it was deemed as a perfect form of protection. You can’t copy someone’s face, right? Well, right, but there are some addendums which should be clearly noted. First off, this technology is very clumsy at times. You need to have very good lighting in the room and to stay completely still to even unlock your own phone if you set a facial recognition password. Second, we’ve all seen movies in which people’s hands or eyes are cut out and then used to open doors with the respective form of recognition in place. No one will need to chop off your face to fool your phone however. They can just simply steal your ID. Any kind of legal documentation you have will have a very good picture of you on it. If it’s good enough for the lintechtt , it’s good enough for a smartphone that doesn’t even care that much whether it’s you or not, as long as it’s presenting the gimmicky new feature for potential buyers.

Patterns and fingerprint scanners

Patterns are pretty much the middle ground between the fingerprint scanner and the classic PIN code. In theory they are also great, as you create a special pattern on the screen that no one else knows. However, the designers didn’t take into account that most smartphone displays are also fingerprint magnets. If you turn off the display, you’ll be able to see a trace of how your finger moved to perform the pattern. Moving on to fingerprint scanners, this might be the safest feature so far. Unfortunately, it too has a flaw. Getting someone’s fingerprints is really not that big of a challenge, especially if someone is determined to get into that phone. You notice your phone’s missing, alongside the print magnet glass you were drinking from earlier? It’s surely a coincidence.

Mobile technology has been privy to some pretty cool security innovations. Unfortunately, neither one of them managed to provide a fail proof form of protection for handsets. There’s quite a sizeable luck factor included in whether or not a security feature will fend off invaders, meaning that smartphone users need to put extra work into guarding their phone physically. Leaving things in the hands of the phone manufacturers is unfortunately not an option with the current technology available to users.

I'm the editorial writer for DroidHorizon. You'll find my content varies in the technology, science, & lifestyle categories.

1 Comment

  1. A fingerprint is the most secured but also have the risks like we see in the movie.

    Reply

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