The rise in use of smartphones has resulted in a new fear called nomophobia. A recent survey by U.K.-based mobile security service provider SecurEnvoy conducted among 1,000 people found that two thirds (66%) of respondents fear losing or being without their mobile phone. And it is on the rise — up 13% from just four years ago. Nomophobia also includes the anxiety someone feels when not in the range of a cell tower to receive optimal reception.
If you live in the Washington Metropolitan Area you might be slightly more concerned about nomophobia given recent reports in the media. Last week the Metropolitan Police Department reported a rise in the theft of smartphones in the District of Columbia. In a Washington Post article Chief Cathy Lanier said, “It is the single fastest rising crime issue that I’ve seen in a long time.” Lanier also said 40 to 50 percent of all robberies in the city are smartphone-related.
According to the article, the robberies have been a “snatch, grab, and run” type with the phones being resold quickly. The average resale value for the phones is estimated to range from $100 - $300. If this is happening in your area what can you do to protect your smartphone?
NCPC has a few tips:
- Be aware of your surroundings when using your smartphone in public. Keep your smartphone close to you and do not leave it on a table, desk, or counter.
- Use passwords to lock your phone.
- Do not save your passwords on your smartphone for social media sites, banking, or other personal accounts.
- Know the phone number to report your missing or stolen smartphone. When you call, the cell phone company can disable the phone remotely.
- Protect your smartphone by using a smartphone security pouch or smartphone security case
- Back up the information on your cell phone in case you lose or have your smartphone stolen. Most cell phone companies offer backup assistance through your phone plans.
- Download a “find your phone” app or enable a Wipe feature on your phone. If you won’t be able to get your phone back, a Wipe application will clear all the data so your private information won’t fall into the wrong hands. There is also other technology available that renders the phone useless if stolen.
Do you have any tips to add to this list?
For more information on the survey: http://mashable.com/2012/02/21/nomophobia/