the televisions and dongles with Android TV they provide us with access to all kinds of content on large screens. They have many advantages, and although in theory they are nearing death in favor of Google TV, they are the majority option on the market. For this very reason, your TV may be the target of a hacker and make you suffer security problems that will put your personal information at risk.
Whether you have a device with Google TV or Android TV, which are not very different, keep these in mind Tips to increase security and make your Android TV an iron and insurmountable device.
First of all, set a PIN for the restricted profile
A suitable security method so that outsiders cannot touch your Smart TV is to establish a PIN. On Android TV, there is what is called the “Restricted Profile” that restricts (worth the redundancy) the applications to which you want prevent access to other users.
To do this, go to Settings > Security and restrictions > Restricted profile and create it. Your TV or device will then ask you to enter a PIN to protect this mode of security.
Subsequently, you will see the list of applications, indicate the ones that you will allow to use while the restricted profile is active. To exit this mode, scroll up on the home screen and select “Exit restricted profile”.
This type of profile is useful when we have visitors or are going to tampering with the device by outsiders. Thus, they will not be able to touch too much, yes, try not to forget the PIN or you will have to factory reset your Android TV.
Be careful with the apps you install
As with Android, our devices with the Google operating system allow the installation of millions of applications from the Google Play Store, or from outside the official store. Sometimes, even in the Google repository, some apps with malware or viruses can sneak in.
We must be careful with these applications, especially if they raise our suspicions. Distrust almost instinctively everything that comes from outside the Play Store. Although not everything that circulates on the network causes problems, sometimes they can get us into trouble and it would not be the first time.
From web browsers for your TV, to applications to watch DTT, Android TV admits a thousand possibilities, we just have to check first if other users have installed them. If you can’t find information about it, we recommend you forget that application.
Keep your Android TV up to date
This case happens as in mobiles, the firmware is updated constantly including bug fixes or bugs, security improvements and system versions. Android TV shares many things with the mobile system, and one of them is the possibility of updating it.
Doing it is as simple as go to settings (your remote may include a dedicated button), and then to “Device Preferences”, “Device Information”, or “About”. Depending on the model and version of Android TV, this option will be found in one place or another.
Within that section, Locate the “Update Software” function. The device will connect to the Internet to search for updates, and if there are any, it will notify you by presenting the button that we must press to proceed with the update.
Do not disable Play Protect under any circumstances
Google Play Store includes a kind of shield or security layer called Play Protect, which allows us to used to scan installed applications. In fact, when we install new apps, this function will be activated in the background, looking for errors that could compromise the security of the device.
We always recommend having it activated because it fulfills several functions, so you shouldn’t touch anything Well, by default, it is enabled. As we read in the Google support websitePlay Protect checks the security of the Google Play Store apps, analyzes our device in search of harmful apps, warns us in such a case and can deactivate these applications to avoid greater evils.
If you have suspicions, reset the system
Our device may already be infected, it is normal for us to notice a strange behavior such as a slow system, ads that appear everywhere or the appearance of applications that we have not installed.
This type of event is giving us clues. The most sensible thing is full system reset so that it does not continue to affect the performance and security of the equipment. To do this go to Settings> Device preferences> Recover. As with the previous measures, the reset location may vary but will have similar nomenclature.
Next, click on “Delete everything”. Your Android TV will reset and restart showing the welcome screen. Wait patiently and then you can reconfigure everything. This process removes any apps you have installed, their data, system settings, and all downloaded files.
If you need it that way, make a backup beforehand, by connecting a flash drive or external hard drive to one of the device’s USB ports. With any file explorer you can pass your data thus avoiding losing them with the factory reset.
A slightly more drastic method: disconnect from the Internet when you don’t need it
As a last measure to avoid unwanted intrusions into Android TV we can disconnect from the internet. It will seem silly, but if we remove the wireless (or wired) connection we will be safe.
Likewise, it is pointless to disconnect the device from the Internet if we later install suspicious applications. So keep that in mind. Of course, by removing the connection we will prevent them from entering through it. So, we reduce the risk of infecting the system on occasions when we do not need the Internet, for example if we are going to see some content from an external device or simply we are going to watch antenna television.
The security of Android TV directly depends on how we use it. Therefore, we must be careful.
These tips will improve the security of your Android TV or device, making it safer. Now you shouldn’t be so afraid of the entry of malware, but don’t forget, we must minimize the risks to enjoy the device without major worries.