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Nearly One In Three Consumers Who Have Lost Their Mobile Devices Still Do Not Lock Them, New Survey Shows

Stocks in this article: NQ

When asked about what they would be most frightened about if they lost their device, rather surprisingly, most smartphone owners reported losing their saved contacts as the scariest thought. In order of concern, this ranked above having an intruder read their emails or texts (2 nd), having an unauthorized person post to their social networking accounts (3 rd) and even having their photos or videos posted publicly (4 th). 

When it comes to who might find a lost device, most preferred it be their significant other, even if it meant having access to everything on it. This was followed in order by a friend, sibling, parent, child, colleague and lastly, a stranger.  In fact, respondents were unexpectedly confident that they had nothing to hide, with 67% saying they'd have no problem having a boss or manager go through the contents of their device vs. 14% who felt that might jeopardize their career prospects.

Are You SURE You Don't Have Anything to Hide?

Regardless of whether or not it's job-loss worthy, the majority (69%) of consumers admit they have some sort of personal information on their device. This percentage was even higher for the younger age groups. 89% of respondents aged 18 to 34 reported having something private on their smartphone, including passwords for online log-ins such as bank and social networking accounts (59% vs. 37% overall), personal financial information (45% vs. 32% overall), risque photos or videos (38% vs. 20% overall), lewd text messages or emails (39% vs. 19% overall) and confidential work-related items (24% vs. 17% overall).

According to the survey, smartphone owners are aware of the dangers of having sensitive information from their device fall into unauthorized hands, with over half of the survey respondents admitting that either they or someone they know have gotten in trouble as a result of something on their phone. Only 11% admitted this "someone" was themselves. While most of the trouble involves someone discovering inappropriate pictures or messages, other results included breach of bank accounts, loss of business deals, getting fired and even trouble with law enforcement.   

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