Protecting our data from prying eyes is of utmost importance and this has been constantly stressed in recent times. One of the more widely accepted methods of protecting data is through the use of hexadecimal passwords, several characters in length. However, having to enter these passwords over and over again when access to our Android devices is necessary can be quite a drag. Therefore, today we will be looking at various secure alternatives to speed up the unlocking process.
Set Password To Be Requested Only After A Certain Time Period
One way in which you can make the process of unlocking your phone easier is to set your phone to lock only after a certain specified time limit after the screen turns off/sleeps.
To configure this go to Settings—>Security—>Automatically Lock. I would recommend choosing a relatively short time period such as 5 minutes or less. This way, if your phone happens to be stolen or some one tries to access it while it’s unattended, it will probably be locked by the time unwarranted access is attempted.
Smart lock is a quite useful feature which basically allows your device to remain unlocked when it’s safe with you such as when it’s paired with your smartwatch.
Smart Lock can be configured from Settings—>Security—>Smart Lock.
There are 5 different options for keeping your device unlocked safely with Smart Lock which will be discussed below.
To configure this, you will need to sync your Android device with a Bluetooth device such as a Smartwatch or an NFC tag or device. You will need to have Bluetooth turned on if you are syncing with a Bluetooth device and NFC turned on if you are syncing with an NFC device.
As long as your Android device is within close enough proximity to the Bluetooth/NFC device, your phone will remain unlocked. I personally have configured the Trusted Devices option on my Nexus 5 with my Pebble Time smartwatch over Bluetooth.
Additionally, you have the option of keeping your device unlocked when your device is in a selected trusted location. For this feature to work you will of course have to have Location Services enabled as well as have an internet connection.
Trusted places works best when your are connected to a WiFi network.
This option makes use of your phone’s front facing camera and your phone will be automatically unlocked whenever it detects that you are the person holding the phone. Please bear in mind however that this option is not perfect as someone who looks like you could unlock your phone.
With this option, every time you turn on your device, it will scan for your face and unlock if it recognizes you.
Trusted voice allows for your device to be unlocked when you say “Ok Google” on the lock screen.
For this option to work, you must first set up your phone to respond to “Ok Google” from any screen. To do this, you must turn on the From any screen option under Trusted voice.
After enabling this option you will need to train your phone to recognize your voice.
After training your phone, you will then be allowed to enable Trusted voice.
Please note that with Trusted voice, someone with a similar sounding voice could unlock your device.
If you choose to enable On-body detection, your device will use data from its accelerometer to detect whether it is on your person or not. On some devices, your walk pattern will also be detected. With these devices, if your walk pattern changes for whatever reason, the device will re-lock. If this happens, simply unlock your device manually and the new pattern will be adjusted to. Simply set the toggle to the on position within On-body detection in order to enable this option.
After you put down your device, it can take up to a minute for it to lock. Also, after getting on a vehicle such as a car, boat or plane, it may take between 5 or 10 minutes for your device to lock. Please bear in mind as well that it may fail to lock period when you are on an airplane or boat and the best bet in these cases is to manually lock your device.
Security is of utmost importance as we can all agree but by using the tips discussed above, some of the hassle involved with being secure can be alleviated.