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Android users can now switch off 2G to enhance privacy

Android users are now able to switch off 2G settings to increase privacy and security.

The Google-owned operating system - which is used across a range of devices from mobile phones to Smart TVs - added the feature to disable the mobile communications standard which is thought to have a weaker encryption ability than more advanced data capability levels such as 3G, 4G and 5G, which means it can security can be breached easier.

A spokesperson for campaign group The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) said: "This is a fantastic feature that will provide some protection from cell site simulators, an invasive police surveillance technology employed throughout the country. We applaud Google for implementing this much needed feature."

However, although the ability for Android users to turn off their 2G - which can be done via the Settings menu - was applauded by the campaign group, they did go on to claim "a lot more work" needed to be done as they urged Google and other tech giants such as Samsung and Apple to invest further in security for their users and also warned those who have an "older" Android device will not be able to access the new feature.

The statement continued: "Though there is a lot more work to be done this will ensure that many people can finally receive a basic level of protection. We strongly encourage Google, Apple, and Samsung to invest more resources into radio security so they can better protect smartphone owners. Unfortunately due to limitations of old hardware, Google was only able to implement this feature on newer phones. If you have a newer Samsung phone you may also be able to shut off 2G support the same way, unfortunately this is not supported on all networks or all Samsung phones."

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