smudgeYou may already know that the more digits in your phone’s passcode, the better, but if you’re still using a four digit passcode, especially on your iOS device, you should probably change it. Here’s why, and how to do it in iOS and Android.

Hold your phone up to the light. See that? It’s finger grease, and it’s an easily exploited hint at what your password or PIN might be. Even if you were to constantly clean your screen, four-number passcodes are notoriously easy to crack, and it’s getting easier. Law enforcement (and, if they have it, you know criminals do too) have tools designed to crack that passcode quickly.

Here’s how to change to a six-number code on your smart phone.

On your iPhone or iPad:

  • Tap Settings on the Home Screen, and tap Passcode
  • Enter your current passcode
  • Tap “Change Passcode”
  • You’ll be prompted for a six-digit passcode immediately. Type your new passcode, then tap again to confirm.

On your Android phone or tablet:

  • Swipe down from the top of the screen, and tap the Settings gear
  • Scroll down and tap Security
  • Tap “Screen Lock,” and then “PIN.”
  • Type your current PIN, then type your new PIN. Type it again to confirm.