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  • Writer's pictureJames Mosieur

How Travelers Feel About Lost and Found Policies

Today’s travelers pack more than pajamas, sunscreen and flip-flops when they head out on overnight adventures. According to a recent survey, 100 percent of business and leisure travelers pack at least one personal electronic device when they travel; most pack even more. Knowing what travelers have in their bags can help businesses like resorts, hotels, theme parks, conference centers and other travel destinations be aware of how to handle their lost and found departments when guests’ items turn up missing and unclaimed.

Many travelers go high tech when it comes to what they pack in their bags. A recent survey found that 100 percent of all travelers surveyed took a smartphone or cell phone with them on their latest trip. Sixty-eight percent of travelers packed a tablet; 33 percent traveled with a laptop; 21 percent brought along a camera to save memories; 20 percent navigated their travels with a GPS; 11 percent brought along a media player; and 8 percent packed an external hard drive. That’s a lot of technology stowed away and that creates a lot of liability should any of those devices become lost.

According to data from Asurion, 29 million phones and devices are lost and stolen each year. And traveling creates an even greater risk for a lost device. The biggest concern travelers have about lost devices isn’t necessarily the cost of the smartphone they carry – many travelers (68 percent) are more concerned about the data their device contains. This makes sense: Your smartphone, tablet, storage device, camera and GPS could likely contain data about your home’s location, professional life, personal life and other intimate details.

What do travelers expect when it comes to their lost electronic devices? According to the survey cited above, eighty-six percent of travelers report that they would expect the hotel, resort or other place of business that locates the device dispose of it in a manner that ensures their privacy. Seventy-six percent of travelers would choose a hotel or resort

that ensures data protection of lost devices over one that does not have a clear policy for doing so.

The best way hotels, resorts and conference centers can handle the devices that travelers bring and ultimately lose is by donating any unclaimed devices to an organization like the 911 Cell Phone Bank. The 911 Cell Phone Bank takes unclaimed portable electronic devices, like the lost smartphones found at hotels, resorts, and theme parks, and protects the previous owner’s identity and reputation by removing private and confidential data and then uses the devices as lifelines for domestic violence victims and more. To learn more about unclaimed smartphone safety and security, contact us.

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