Nobody does it, but turning off your phone’s Wi-Fi when you leave the house is essential: these are the keys to improving the security of your smartphone

Nobody does it, but turning off your phone’s Wi-Fi when you leave the house is essential: these are the keys to improving the security of your smartphone
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Not many people know this, but turning off Wi-Fi when leaving the house is essential. Here’s how with a simple gesture it is possible to strengthen the security of smartphones and protect your privacy.

A simple, but restrictive tip

Smartphones have become an extension of our daily lives, we constantly use them for anything and everything. However, while these devices are incredibly convenient, they also pose risks to our privacy. How many times have you unintentionally consumed your mobile data at home thinking you were connected to Wi-Fi?? Automatic connection to wireless networks is often underestimated by users, which can compromise the security of our smartphones without us even realizing it.

The first reaction to the fear of consuming mobile data instead of Wi-Fi at home is to leave the Wi-Fi function on all the time. Whether out of fear of missing a connection or simple forgetfulness, keeping your phone constantly scanning for wireless networks is a risky idea. This isn’t just a matter of unnecessary battery consumption, as modern smartphones don’t use a significant amount of power for this function. The real problem lies in security.

Constantly searching for or connecting to wireless networks just because they don’t require a password, or we already have it saved automatically is a questionable practice. While most of the time there is no problem, it opens the door to potential security breaches on your device. These risks increase as you connect to more Internet hotspots. By expanding the number of these connections, you unintentionally share your phone’s information with more networks, exposing your location at all times. If you logged in at the local coffee shop, the gym, and then the supermarket, it’s possible that others could track your location as you mindlessly wander around.

Turn off Wi-Fi at all costs!

All smartphones offer the option to turn off Wi-Fi by accessing the drop-down menu once your phone is unlocked. However, this is not enough. This not only visually disables it, but also removes all wireless connections you’ve been connected to in the past, except those you deem essential. The fewer networks you have saved, the less you expose your phone to potential problems.

For Android users, it is crucial to combine removing unnecessary networks with an extra step. These systems use both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for location, and one important feature deserves special attention: even when you manually turn off these services, your phone can still scan for nearby networks or devices. It is imperative to uncheck both options, which you will find in the settings under “Location.”

If you do not have enough data for worry-free use away from home, it is recommended to check your usage and plan. If you just plan to listen to music on Spotify, do some Google searches, and send messages on WhatsApp, maybe you don’t need Wi-Fi. However, if you want to connect to a public network, It’s best to have a VPN installed on your phone. Google thus provides a free VPN in its Pixels.

A VPN, or virtual private network, creates a secure, encrypted connection between your device and the server you connect to. This protects your data from prying eyes, providing an extra layer of security when using public Wi-Fi networks. Additionally, you can configure your phone to enable Wi-Fi only in specific locations, even if that means sharing your location all the time. Although this may be a concession for some, in general, operating systems such as iOS and Android offer many solutions to address privacy and security issues‘. However, the default configuration does not always guarantee adequate protection in this context.

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