News September 2011.

5 Things To Do BEFORE You Lose Your Gadget

The number of expensive tablet or smart phone gadgets is on the rise. Most of us either have at least one, or are thinking of buying one soon. Tablet-style computers and smartphones provide convenient access to your information and to the internet, from wherever you are. Unfortunately, the downside to their portable nature is that they don’t stay within the secure confines of your office. They can be easily left at another location by mistake or even stolen. So, this month we look at the 5 things that you should do before you lose your gadget.

1. Add Identification – If you found someone’s tablet or phone, you’d look for any identification that told you whose it was, so you could return it. Just as parents label their children’s clothing, add some form of identification to your device. This could consist of a business card in your tablet case, a power-on message with your contact phone number or even engraving your phone number or business name on the device.

2. Password Protect – Most portable devices allow you to set a password or number that must be entered when the device is turned on. This will help prevent a stranger from gaining access to the information you have stored on it. You may also be able to set a ‘time out period’, which will automatically lock your device with the password after a period of time of inactivity.

3. Sync – Most tablets and smartphones copy (or ‘synchronize’) their information to another computer or to an internet-based service. Check that your synchronization is configured and working correctly, with no errors. Then if you do lose your device, you’ll have somewhere else where you can log in and access a copy of your information.

4. Backup – Not everything on your tablet or smartphone may ‘sync’ to another location. A great example of this is contact information that is only stored on your phone’s SIM card, or information that you have entered into an application that only exists on your portable device (such as notes). Make sure you have a plan for regularly taking a snapshot of this information too and storing it in a secure place, just as you should for your office-bound computers.

5. Add Remote Control & Tracking – For tablets and smartphones that have a GPS function, applications have been developed that will show you where your device is located, based on its GPS data. Most of these applications need to be installed or configured before you lose your device. In addition to locating your device, some services will allow you to remotely lock your device or even remotely wipe all of the information on it. Check out Find my iPhone, Find my iPad, Where’s My Droid and Samsung’s DIVE. Security software manufacturers are also starting to release anti-virus software for portable devices with remote locate and remote wipe features.

Talk to Computer Troubleshooters Croydon about the best protection mechanisms for your portable devices, or about any of your technology needs … before it’s too late!