The smartphone has become an increasingly integral part of our lives. The concept of the phone has evolved dramatically over the years. From a simple device for talking to a distant friend or relative, it has now become a camera, a navigator, and even our default payment method. If on the one hand, doing all these operations with a single device can be very convenient, on the other hand, it is necessary to enter some very sensitive personal data. So today we’re going to explain how to lock apps on Android, to protect them from malicious attackers and prevent them from accessing them. In case you are interested in the Apple world, we invite you to read this guide on how to block apps on iPhones.
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How to block apps on Android: general information
First of all, it should be clarified that some brands implement app blocking by default on their devices; in particular, in this guide, we’ll show you the solutions offered by Xiaomi, Huawei, and Honor. However, should you not have any smartphone associated with these brands, we’ll provide you with some good alternatives to download from the Play Store.
How to block apps on Xiaomi
As far as Xiaomi is concerned, as mentioned this feature is already present within the operating system of the Chinese company’s devices. So let’s see how to do it.
- Open the Settings and head to the Apps item.
- In the new screen, select the App Lock option.
- At this point you have to select the app you want to block; look for it within the list and select it. You will be returned with a green confirmation checkmark.
- Next, you need to create a lock policy. Select Set password and create a sequence that you’ll be able to remember. Alternatively, under Change password, you’ll be able to choose alternative methods such as entering an alphanumeric password or a PIN.
- Then click Next and you’ll have the option to set up a Xiaomi account if necessary, which will come in handy in case you can’t remember your password.
Now you just have to test if everything went well. Then select the app(s) you blocked and check that you are prompted for authentication as you set it.
How to block apps on Huawei and Honor
On the other hand, as far as Huawei or Honor devices are concerned (i.e. devices with the EMUI interface), in this case, too you’ll just need to enable a feature that is present by default in the system.
- Open the Settings screen and go to Security and Privacy.
- Select the item App Locking when the new screen opens.
- Select the apps you are interested in and enable the feature through the switches next to the relevant items. Finally, select your preferred lock method (sequence, password, PIN, or fingerprint).
Apps to lock apps: solutions from the Play Store
Some apps can do the same thing, namely Android app locking, which is a useful alternative especially for those who don’t have a device that implements the app locking feature.
The most popular solution to lock Android apps is offered by Smart AppLock. It is an application that can protect the data related to our apps by locking them through custom security methods. In addition to the usual PIN or password protection, you can choose alternatives such as fingerprint lock and several other interesting features. One of them is the ability to take a picture of the attacker who tries to open certain apps after taking possession of your phone. You can also activate protection for individual photos and videos. Here is, in particular, how to use the application:
- Once downloaded from the Play Store, open Smart AppLock.
- Select a sequence and advance by clicking Accept and Start.
- In the tab called “General” you’ll be able to see all the installed apps; select the ones you want to protect and click Allow.
- At first, you’ll need to grant Smart AppLock advanced permissions, by activating the switch near the item Allow access to usage data.
- In case you want to disable the option, just go back to the main Smart AppLock screen and uncheck the item related to the apps that interest you.
Some of the best alternatives to Smart AppLock include:
Lock App Protection Lock: this is an application very similar to the previous one, through which you can lock your most valuable apps with the protection methods you prefer. This is also a free tool.
AppBlock – Stay Focused: In this case the purpose changes but not the concept. Through this app, you can block programs that interest you in such a way that you’re not tempted to pick up your smartphone and venture into social media scrolling and other operations that undermine your productivity.
Google Family Link: an application designed by Google for parents, so you can disable apps that are less suitable for use by minors.