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RenovoData - The Data Protection Blog

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 I lost my smartphone, what can I do to protect myself against fraud?

lost my smart phoneIn today’s world, the use of smart devices is widespread across all economic levels of society.  So too, the theft of smartphones and other small portable devices is on the rise.  Whether we are talking, texting or using application data, the fact is that our smartphones and devices hold a lot of personal information.  So, what actions can a user take now to limit their liability and exposure to fraud or identity theft in the event their device is lost or stolen?

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Lock and password protect your phone.  For some devices, biometrics, such as a fingerprint scanner are available.
  • Turn on location services. This will help the authorities recover the device if possible.
  • Consider installing anti-theft software on your phone but NEVER go it alone when tracking your missing device. Such an activity can be extremely dangerous!  Here’s a heartbreaking example: http://www.cnet.com/news/teen-shot-dead-after-using-app-to-track-lost-phone/
  • Regularly backup your data and keep application passwords secure. In the event your device is stolen, you will want to change all passwords and revoke access for any website or application accessed through your phone.
  • Make a note of your phone’s IMEI, MEID or ESN number and keep that information in a safe place (like you would do with credit card accounts and other sensitive information).
  • Insurance may be another option to consider in case your device is lost or stolen. For many of us, our smartphones help us run our businesses. Having insurance through your wireless provider adds another level of security and peace of mind.
  • Consider installing an application that provides “remote wipe” capability to minimize the chance of your information falling in the wrong hands.
  • Once you have determined that your phone has fallen into the wrong hands, notify your service provider immediately!

Taking a proactive approach to protecting yourself and your company against data loss should always extend to endpoint devices such as smartphones and tablets.  If you would like to know more about how RenovoData helps clients protect their data, we are just an email or phone call away!

Additional Resources:

https://www.fcc.gov/stolen-phones-contact-numbers  (phone numbers for cellular providers)
https://www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/lostwirelessdevices.pdf  (the FCC’s Stolen and Lost Wireless Devices Guide)



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