Smartphones: What to do if You Lose One

Smartphones are very important tools today, but what happens should you lose your phone?

The security risk of lost smartphones

Researches at Symantec recently made the “Smartphone Honey Stick Project” to test what folks do when tempted with a lost smartphone. The findings were unnerving to say the least; they learned that 96 percent of people made an effort to access personal data while 45 percent made an effort to access corporate emails.

Human nature and smartphone tech

The Symantec study is an intriguing one since it says a lot about human nature. Symantec intentionally left 50 smartphones in New York, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., San Francisco, and Ottawa. Each phone was full of fake files and apps that contained no information but were labeled with enticing names such as “online banking,” “social media,” and “saved passwords.”

The outcome was that 72 percent of people that found the phones, at the very least, accessed the photos. That number can be chalked up to the curious nature of humanity, but when you observe that 43 percent of people attempted to open the “online banking” files things get a little more concerning.

Protecting your smartphone

The Symantec study makes us realize that we have a ton of data on our smartphones that needs to be protected. Luckily, there are some easy ways to accomplish this.

The simplest way to secure the data on your smartphone is to make a secure password. It might seem obvious, nevertheless you would be astonished at how many people don’t password protect their phones. There’s also many apps that securely lock specific apps or files. A less obvious choice is to subscribe to a service that lets you remotely wipe your smartphones memory. No matter which method you utilize, it’s essential that you take some method of securing your smartphone in case of loss or theft.

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