39% of smartphone users don’t take the most basic security measures

39% of smartphone users don't take the most basic security measures

Even though smartphones can contain a lot of information that its owner would rather keep private, 39% of the more than 100 million American adult smartphone owners fail to take even minimal security measures. These measures include using a screen-lock, backing up data or installing an app to locate a missing phone and/or remotely wipe its data, according to Consumer Reports‘ Annual State of the Net survey.

While 7.1 million smartphones were irreparably damaged, lost, or stolen and not recovered last year – 69% of smartphone users hadn’t backed up their data, and just 22% had installed software that could locate their lost device.

The report revealed that most smartphone users haven’t suffered serious losses because of their phone, but there are mobile threats that merit concern, like the malicious software. Last year, 5.6 million smartphone users experienced undesired behavior on their phones such as the sending of unauthorized SMS or accessing of accounts without their permission.

The location tracking feature that all smartphones have can also leave users vulnerable to threats — 1% of users told Consumer Reports that they or a person in their household had been harassed or harmed after someone used such location tracking to pinpoint their phone.

CR also projects that at least 5.1 million preteens use their own smartphones, and they may unwittingly disclose personal information or risk their safety…

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