Private Mode on Your Galaxy Tab S2 NOOK

By Corey Sandler

Making someone enter a pattern, PIN, or password before they can use your Galaxy Tab S2 NOOK is like locking the front door. But if you really want to secure your tablet’s contents, consider encrypting the device, or the external microSDHC card, or both.

Why would you want to do this? If you’re merely storing eBooks and a few photographs, videos, and music files, this might be a bit of overkill. But if you plan to store personal or business files that would be damaging or embarrassing if seen without your permission, you can encrypt them. Now, it must be said that the level of encryption within an Android device isn’t government spy-agency level. (And, as you know, even Top Secret government files can leak like a sieve.)

An encrypted Tab S2 NOOK is difficult (if not impossible) for an amateur to read. Your strongest defense is a complex, unobvious password.

You can set up private folders for certain applications, including:

  • Gallery

  • Music

  • My Files

  • Video

  • Voice Recorder

Certain other third-party apps may also use the same system or add their own form of encryption.

Setting up Private Mode

Here’s how to set up and use Private Mode:

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon, and then tap the Settings icon.

  2. Tap Private Mode.

  3. Select an access type from amongst those offered: Pattern, PIN, Fingerprint, or Password.

  4. Follow the prompts to record your access code or other information.

It doesn’t make sense to use a password like password or private, or to write the password on a sticky note and attach it to your tablet. Oh, and don’t forget your password or PIN or pattern, either.

You won’t be able to gain access to the material without it, and the only way to reset this form of security is to do a complete (hard) reset, which deletes all your personal material and some of the system settings and is in just about every respect a true pain in the ear.

To help protect your privacy, tap Auto Off. This automatically turns off Private Mode anytime the screen turns off. Otherwise, the Private folder you unlocked is accessible to anyone who uses the tablet until the next time it’s completely shut down and restarted.

The setup page for the Galaxy S2 Nook's Private Mode

You can encrypt folders of images, text, and certain other types of files behind a password, pattern, or fingerprint.

Don’t forget the code, though, or whatever is held in the folder will be irretrievable by you.

Moving an item into a Private folder

To move an item into a private folder, follow along:

  1. Find and select the folder in the Gallery (or in another folder).

    It has to be eligible to use this procedure.

  2. Tap More.

  3. Tap Move to Private.

  4. Enter your PIN or password or pattern or allow scanning of your fingerprint to complete the transfer.

Viewing items from a Private folder

When you’ve closed a private folder, you can’t see the items in it within MyFiles or Gallery or other applications until you return to Settings and turn on Private Mode, and enter the password, pattern, or fingerprint protection you required.