Losing your mobile phone is a worrying thought, but when you consider how many private emails, texts and other sorts of data are stored on it, losing your mobile phone suddenly becomes much more worrying.
Thankfully destroying the private data stored on a lost mobile phone is actually a simple process that starts by preparing yourself beforehand by installing a security app to your device.
There are a few things to consider when you lose your phone.
1. Wipe private data from your device
2. Recover important information from your backup
3. Find your phone again
4. Prevent anyone making calls on your account by calling Customer Care and asking us to suspend your service
5. Blacklist your phone so it won’t work for anyone else
The solutions for these vary a little based on what type of phone you have.
Backing up your contacts and email data is automatic on an Android mobile phone if you’ve signed in to your Google account.
Pair this with a great Android security app like Lookout Mobile Security and you can have backup of your photos as well as some of Lookout’s more exotic features like anti-virus protection, remote wipe of data and a find-my-phone function.
We published an article about Lookout Mobile Security check it out.
If you are connected to a Blackberry Enterprise Server (such as your work email) your IT department can help you if you lose your device.
They can remotely lock and wipe your device and if you recover your device when you re-sync your account your contacts and emails will load again.
Apple offered a service for a fee called MobileMe.
This service allowed you to backup your contacts, remotely wipe and find a lost device.
At the moment, Apple aren’t accepting any new customers to MobileMe. They will launch a new service called iCloud in our spring.
We’ll write about it on this blog when it’s launched.
It’s possible to blacklist a lost or stolen mobile phone or tablet and prevent it from being used on any Australian mobile network.
Thankfully this is actually a simple process that starts by discovering its IMEI number – a 15 digit code that acts as the phone’s unique identification number.
If you’ve already lost your mobile phone then its IMEI number can usually be found on your mobile phone contract or printed on the handset’s original box.
You can also find your phone’s IMEI number by calling *#06# from the phone itself.
Armed with its IMEI code, call your mobile network operator and ask for your mobile phone to be remotely blacklisted. This will prevent anyone from using your device on any Australian mobile network.
It might not prevent anyone from accessing your data, so make sure you set up some security beforehand and remotely wipe before blacklisting it.
This process works for any lost or stolen mobile phone, irrespective of its make or model.
If your mobile phone or smartphone can store personal data onto removable SD or Micro SD memory cards, it’s important you know how to wipe data from these too.
If your phone can download apps, try searching its online app store for an app that lets you remotely wipe your phone’s memory card data.
Alternatively, some such apps also automatically encrypt everything stored to them, meaning that, should you ever lose your mobile phone, the private data stored to it would be unreadable by anyone else unless they guess your password.
So these are some of our tips we came up with, do you have any you want to share?
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