Smart phone and iPhone usage continues to increase as consumers recognize the many benefits of mobile communications. Consumers can conduct a wide array of transactions on their mobile phones. Mobile phones are now tied to your money in many ways so it is important to protect your cell phone as you would your purse or wallet. Create a PIN code to access your phone. Place a small label on the back of the phone with your contact information so that you could be contacted if you ever lost your phone. Avoid the “remember my password” option in connection to financial accounts, email, and shopping applications. Everyone should have the contact number for their phone service provider handy so that their lost or stolen phone can be disconnected in a timely manner if necessary. If a thief had possession of your phone, what could they do with it? That is the question that every mobile phone user should be asking. There was a recent news story where smart phones and iPhones were purposely left for others to find. A high percentage of those finding the phones were accessing applications on the “lost” phones. These applications included home banking, email, photos, and downloaded files. If common citizens would access this type of information, imagine what a mobile phone thief would do in a short amount of time?
The future of mobile phones will only enhance the need for device security. Mobile phone devices are expected to become the primary payment system of the future, replacing debit and credit cards. Consumers should begin thinking about their mobile devices in the same mode as they would cash. Protect your identity and money by properly securing your mobile devices.