Overall, the chances of somebody losing a smart phone are quite high. According to one survey, an estimated 113 cell phones are lost or stolen in the US, every minute of every day. The average individual will at least misplace their phone about once every year.
While losing a smartphone or having one stolen might seem like a big immediate financial concern, because of the cost to replace the device, the greater expense can come if smartphone finds its way into the possession of a skilled hacker.
Although it's estimated that nearly 7 million smart phones are lost or stolen by thieves every year, it is the inclusion of financial applications, and web access for the average smartphone user, that is the real cause for concern. Today, our smartphones work just like a digital wallet, and we can access our funds and banking information, as well as a variety of personal information, all from one convenient interface in our pockets. The problem that arises is that a hacker can easily get their hands on all of our mobile money and our personal information as well.
Mobile e-commerce is increasing at a rapid rate, but smartphone security doesn't seem to be matching up (or keeping up) with this new demand. A wide array of activities on our smart phones require us to store financial information or personal data, and the only way to keep all of this data safe is with the correct protection.
Protecting Your Phone
About 32% of users password protect their phone, but still have an automatic sign in feature for their banking or financial website. Putting a PIN on your phone will help to lock a user out temporarily, but it doesn't encrypt any of the data, so it can be fairly easy for a hacker to access your information by routing their way around the PIN or login information.
One of the best insurance policies that many mobile users have today is a “kill switch” app, or security application. This is an application that you can access from your computer, with a simple login to lock your phone permanently and reset it to the factory default. This will fully encrypt all of the disk data on the phone as well, so that it cannot be recovered. It's these types of security measures that will prevent your finances being compromised, in the event that you lose your smart phone.
This type of prevention is definitely what's going to be needed, as we grow to depend on digital wallets and