It would be dumb to lose your smartphone.
You’d be inconvenienced, and whoever found it might have access to a goldmine of information, including your e-mail correspondence, your address book and maybe even your documents.
Play it safe and use these steps to protect and yourself and your phone:
- Never leave it unattended, not even for a moment. It only takes a second for someone to pick it up.
- Add password protection to your phone and to any sensitive documents. Set your phone to require a password at start-up. This may seem like a nuisance at first, but you’ll get used to it eventually. It’s worth doing because if you should leave your phone somewhere, no one can get on and browse your documents, look through your contact list, read your e-mail, or access info that would allow them to steal your identity. If your phone has any sensitive documents, set them to require a password, too.
- Never use the “remember me” option that pops the password in automatically. This may seem like a nuisance, too. But it’s useless to have passwords if anyone who finds your phone can breeze right by them.
- Back up your info. Synchronize or back up data regularly so that any information that disappears with your phone can be recovered easily.
- Consider anti-theft software. You can get software for your phone that lets you track or remotely access it if you lose it. There are even programs that let you control the phone remotely, causing it to ring constantly even if it’s off or on silent mode. This last item may not get your phone back, but you’ll be secure in the knowledge that it’s annoying whoever took it.
- Wipe your phone clean before discarding it. Many people sell or give away old phones that still have data on them. When that happens, the person getting your phone can see your contact list, can read your messages, can see who you’ve called and who’s called you. That’s not good. So when you get a new phone be sure you wipe the old one clean. Your cell phone carrier can do it for you, although they may charge you. You can also do it yourself.