Smartphones, especially those based on the Android platform are getting more popular, smarter and high end by the day. Many people are adding owning one to their to-do lists thanks to a really good run this year. They have become life companions, well because Android is user-friendly, or perhaps it’s just a trend. Whereas the folks with iPhones will feel suave with the cloud, it’s not a common thing to have that talk when it comes to Android device holders.
Android devices carry a lot of personal data such as text messages, emails, pictures, music, notes, and so much. This may be convenient carrying all that stuff around with us but it causes a huge security risk in case a malicious person accesses this information. The best way to protect your data from simple unauthorized access is by setting some sort of lock on your phone.
Android OS has a range of ways to keep your phone locked which include lock by Pin, Password, Pattern, Fingerprint, Voice and Face Unlock. The most popular methods used are the use of Pin, Password and Pattern since most people can’t afford the high-end smartphones that come rocking fingerprint scanners.
But have you ever wondered; which android lock screen method is the best? Well if it hasn’t crossed your mind, it really should be your concern amidst this fast-paced technology wave because your smartphone in some way somehow is part of you and your life. Obviously, you have already made a choice of your lock screen, but is it safe? Every lock method has its downsides. I will go through some of them for you and then you will make a decision.
This is the most used, most popular method and above all the easiest to remember. Swiping a pattern lock may feel fun and futuristic. You choose your pattern by connecting a minimum of 4 points and a maximum of 9 a grid of 3×3. The possible number of patterns is 1,624 if 4 points are used and 140,704 if 9 points are used.
They may be a futuristic feel but they are the easiest to crack that is because there is a high possibility of you and a stranger over there having the same pattern. Also, a simple peek while somebody is drawing their pattern is enough to memorize it especially if you left the visible lines of your pattern. Swiping also leaves a trail of fingerprints along with your pattern’s route. It may be fun to unlock your phone with the pattern but mind the security of the information on the phone. If you’re so into the pattern lock method, make sure you turn off visible lines and connect at least 7 points for an abstract pattern. Forget the Z, L, W, M kinds of patterns since they are so easy to guess.
Android allows a maximum of 16 digits for the pin. The possibility of someone guessing your correct pin is infinitely smaller as compared to the pattern. But you shouldn’t use pins that are somehow attached to you, such as birthdays, birth years, among others since these top the list of the unauthorized user trying to access your handset. A good pin is safer than the pattern.
Passwords can contain any character on your keyboard, including a-z, A-Z, 0-9, and all special characters, such as ! @, #, $, and so on. In total, that’s about 90 different possibilities with a US English keyboard. The higher the possibilities, the harder it is to guess the right password. This makes the password the safest so far. It may be a pain to type in a long complex password every time you want to unlock your phone, but it’s more secure than the pin and password. You can create a simple but complex one.
This is the safest method of all the above if your lucky to own a handset that has this capability. No one can possibly copy this since fingerprints are unique. It’s quick to unlock the phone and doesn’t require you to memorize anything since the phone does that for you. A simple swipe of the finger and the phone is unlocked. But once the fingerprint scanners are damaged, you may be locked out of your phone. So it’s wise to set alternative measures too, just in case.
If you are a fan of Sci-Fi movies, you’ve on various occasions seen this kind of tech being used. This is the easiest of them all. It doesn’t require you to type or swipe your finger anywhere. Just hold your phone in front of you and the front camera doing the rest of the magic. Sadly, smartphone makers have not properly incorporated this futuristic tech to work seamlessly on their devices. On several occasions, your identical twin can effortlessly unlock your device. It also requires you to have a source of light beaming on your face to enable the front camera read the details of your face. This makes this kind of lock insecure, at least until it’s patched to get past the huddles.
Every lock screen has its downside and it is solely up to you to ensure that you have your phone secured by avoiding weak codes, sharing passwords, making sure people around you don’t pry while you are drawing your pattern. Create easy to remember but hard to guess codes and patterns. You should put in mind that no password, pin or pattern, however, complex it maybe is secure when someone else knows it.