Your iPhone is a precious item. It’s not cheap, and if you’re like most people, it has your whole life on it. Your banking information, your private conversations, and your email and work information are all usually on your phone.

Keeping your phone safe is important, but too many people fail to take the basic precautions they should. Don’t lose your phone and all your information just because of a little carelessness. Here are five tips for keeping your phone safe when you’re out and about.

Set the right passcode

iPhone’s default mode is a four digit password, but this isn’t very safe. It’s too easy for someone to see what you’re inputting, even from a distance, and then break into your phone if they can get their hands on it. Fortunately, iPhone allows you to set up an alphanumeric passcode.

Six or even eight digits are far harder for a crook to see unnoticed than four, and once you have least six digits in an unpredictable combination, it is impossible for anyone to guess it within 10 tries. Turn on the alphanumeric passcode feature by first going to your phone’s Settings and looking under Touch ID & Passcode.

Set up iPhone erase

In the same place where you turn on the alphanumeric password, at the very bottom of the page, you will find an option for Erase Data. If you turn this on, the phone will automatically erase all data after 10 failed attempts to guess the passcode.

Ten attempts is not enough to guess any passcode of six digits or more, and turning on this feature will keep thieves from getting access to bank accounts, credit card information, or home address. Don’t worry about your kids, either, as it will take them three hours to accidentally erase your data.

Get a phone pouch

How many times have you been out trying to juggle your phone along with the car keys, kids, and shopping bags? Do you tend to shove your iPhone into a pocket, only to worry constantly that it will fall out when your attention is on something else?

One way around this is to get a phone pouch to rid you of all those worries. A phone pouch easily tucks into any outfit and provides a stable, safe, and protected place for you to put your iPhone. It is especially useful for those days when you don’t want to wear pants with pockets.

Don’t be an easy target

In some places in the world, people are so careless with their phones while out on the street that the local police refer to process of stealing iPhones as “apple picking.” Fortunately, there are ways to make sure you and your phone are never an easy target.

Don’t use your phone while you walk down the street. If you need to check a message or get directions, go into a shop or at least stop and put your back to a wall. Always hold your phone securely in one hand and use the other hand to input data or swipe.

Always turn on Find My iPhone

This handy service allows you to find your phone if you lose it. If you misplace your phone, simply check Find My iPhone from a computer or another Apple device, and you will be able to see on a map precisely where it is.

You can also use the feature to display a message on the screen, which can tell a Good Samaritan where to call or go to return it to you. If you realize your phone has fallen into the wrong hands, you can use the feature to erase everything on it and protect yourself.

These are just a few of the ways you can keep your iPhone safe while out and about. Don’t be careless with something as important as your phone: take the necessary steps to protect your investment and your privacy.

Categories: Consumer Tech