Get your devices secure, streamlined and ready for 2017

Updated: 
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In Ancient Rome, the first day of the year was dedicated to Janus - the God of Gates and Doors, who was often depicted looking both backward and forward. So if you aren't planning on getting a new device for the New Year, now is a good time to look back at the digital gunk you've accumulated and do a little cleaning.

The basic process of rejuvenating your device is pretty simple but how you do it varies slightly for each platform. Here it is in a nutshell:


Remove apps you don't use and media you don't need

Back up what you can in a secure cloud -- using a strong, uncrackable password for each account. Delete what you don't need. Secure your device with the latest updates and security software.

Here's a quick look at how this looks on some of the biggest operating systems:

Android

After you've cleared out the stray apps, start with your built-in clean-up tool in the Storage pane. See which apps have the most data in the cache and start deleting.

Now if you're on Wi-Fi go to Settings --> About Phone/Tablet --> System/Software Updates --> Check Now -- Restart & install (if necessary).

iOS

Once you've eliminated all the apps you don't use , check out your Total Storage and consider deleting apps that have accumulated hundreds of megabytes of storage and redownloading them.

Also be sure to clean out the caches of your browsers -- Safari or Chrome. Now if you're on Wi-Fi or directly connected to iTunes, go to Settings and see if you have a Software Update waiting for you.

Windows

It's easier to get in trouble deleting filed on your PC than a mobile device but Windows 10 makes deleting apps more similar to a mobile experience. Do that then review and empty your "Recycle Bin."

Windows 10 also makes it easy to manage your Storage -- just click on Windows Key + I --> System --> Storage -- and delete temporary files, neither of which are likely to present further problems while freeing up space. Windows 10 should keep your security updated automatically. To check on this, click Start --> Settings > Update & security --> Windows Update --> Check for updates.

macOS

Start with your Applications folder. Click on the "Size" heading to get a sense of where you're using most of your storage. Get rid of the programs you aren't using. Your Mac OS X actually has several Trash cans that you can clear out. Clear out the can for your main account by control + clicking on it.

If you are an iPhoto, iMovie or Mail user, you need to clear out the bins in each of those programs individually. Also, take a look at your "Downloads" folder to see if you can start doing some deleting there. macOS Sierra contains several new storage tools to clear up disk space that you should check out.

Now click on the Apple in the upper left hand corner --> About this Mac --> On the Overview Screen click Software Update. Now you're in the App store. You can click there directly and click Updates in the upper right to update other apps any time.

We're giving all of our customers anti-virus protection on their first device FREE and protection for 8 devices for only £2 a month (worth £99 for a year). Just log in to My Account, select the package you want and you will receive an email from F-Secure to install it on your device for full protection.

Now that you have taken care of this, you're ready to look forward to 2017!

New Year fireworks and Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London, England, United Kingdom, Europe