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What to do When Your Smartphone Gets Stolen

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What to do When Your Smartphone Gets Stolen

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If you’ve ever had your smartphone stolen, then you can relate to the frustration it causes and the potential risks that it can expose you to.  There are steps that you can take to help prevent your device from being stolen. Let’s take a look at how to prevent smartphone theft, and how to respond if your gadget is stolen.

Smartphone theft has become a major issue in recent years. More and more criminals are shifting their focus to these not-so-difficult-to-swipe devices. According to the Washington D.C. Police Department, nearly 40% of thefts in major U.S. cities involve smart phones. Lately we’ve been hearing about instances of thieves stealing Smart phones from people who are in the middle of a conversation, using bicycles to snatch the device and immediately disappear. To add to the danger some thieves are robbing people at gunpoint.

The Risk
what would happen if your Smartphone was stolen? Think about it; your smartphone is probably carrying all of your personal contact information, appointment information, access to all of your social media accounts, financial information, photos, personal notes, and even more sensitive data. As a business owner, your Smartphone likely has access to your company’s contacts. If you keep other business apps on your smartphone, such as a remote server login or CRM software, a thief would gain access to your company’s client contact info, financial data, and all your company secrets. If your device gets stolen, you’ll be putting yourself, your company, and your clients at risk. To avoid this unhappy situation, let’s look at practical ways to prevent your device from being stolen.

Prevention
Be Attentive.The first step in preventing smartphone theft is to be aware of the possibility. Theft can occur anywhere at any time. You need to be cognizant of your surroundings and keep tabs on your belongings. Don’t draw attention to your smartphone in crowded places if you can help it. Use common sense, and don’t leave it on a table while you visit the bathroom, or let strangers talk you into letting them use it to make calls. Know your surroundings.

Use Passwords.You should always guard your smartphone with a password or PIN lock. It’s a good idea to frequently change your password. Take this simple measure to prevent others from accessing your device.

Download Security Apps.There are many apps available that can track, lock, and erase important information on your Smartphone. The important factor here is to download and activate these apps before your device is stolen. The “Lost My iPhone” app is a perfect example. When you activate the app, it allows you to log into your iCloud account from any other device to track your stolen phone. You can then locate it on a map, lock the device, and even erase all of its contents.

Save Backups.By making it a habit to regularly backup your Smartphone data (photos, contacts, preferences, etc.) then you can quickly retrieve it if your device is stolen. Always store the backups somewhere else, like your computer, or external hard drive.

Get Insurance. Obtaining phone insurance through your carrier or third party provider is a great idea, especially if you are prone to losing things. This guarantees that, a new device will be sent to you if you get robbed.

Enforce Security Policies.You can distribute various security policies from your email server to your employee’s devices helping to safeguard your company data. These policies should include using a lock screen or password, encrypting the devices, and allowing remote data wiping in the event the device is lost or stolen.

Reaction
being robbed is horrible. Most of us will react like this:

 

 

Report.Upon realizing that your device has been stolen, you should immediately notify both your service provider, and the police. By notifying your service provider, you prevent the thief from using the phone to make pricey calls and spamming your contacts. This also prevents you from paying any outrageous fees that the thief might incur. By reporting to the police, you’re providing documented proof that your device was stolen. Tell your employer – if your email and other company data was on the phone they will need to be aware of it and wipe the data remotely. Of course, this is only possible if you’ve taken the proper precautions. Your company may also have to report the stolen data to customers, depending on regional and industry regulations.

Having your phone stolen is the worst. Don’t put your data at risk – take these steps. Who knows who the thief is selling your device to? Take the proper security precautions to ensure the safety of your data, and don’t hesitate, act immediately after realizing that your device has been stolen.

Have you ever had a device stolen from you? If so, how did you react to having your Smartphone stolen? Do you have any valuable tips to share on phone security?