People are unsuspectingly selling their personal information to complete strangers as a new report from CPP finds half (54%) of second hand mobile phones contain extensive personal data.
CPP’s tips on wiping your mobile phone of personal information:
1. Restore all factory settings – this is the first step that you should take as it is the easiest precaution before disposing of the unit, but factory resets are far from permanent so follow steps 2-4 to protect your data.
2. Remove your SIM card and destroy it .
3. Delete back-ups – even if your smartphone, PDA or laptop data is securely removed from the mobile device, it can continue to exist on a back up somewhere else.
4. Log out and delete – make sure you have logged out of all social networking sites, emails, wireless connections, company networks and applications. Once you are logged out make sure you delete the password and connection.
5. Various passwords – avoid using the same ID/password on multiple systems and storing them on your mobile phone, if you are going to store them on your phone use a picture that reminds you of the password.
6. If you are selling on your phone ensure you ask for it to be wiped to be on the safe side.
7. Don’t store vast amounts of personal information on your mobile phone / SIM.
8. Make sure you check your bank statements regularly to monitor for suspicious transactions.
9. Remember the Golden Rule: Identity thieves are experts at spotting an opportunity to steal your identity and only need a few personal details.