By Jesse Oguntimehin
My first mobile phone in 2004 was a Nokia 3310. I was one of those people who came late to the game. Mobile phone movement came into Nigeria in 2000/2001, since then mobile phones have been ubiquitous- not only in Nigeria, but also in most parts of Africa. We have seen huge growth in the adoption of mobile phone use and how the technology has been weaved seamlessly into the lives of many.
By the way, I have long upgraded- I don’t use Nokia 3310 anymore. At the moment I have a Blackberry 9360 and a Nokia N8 with superb camera. Both phones have access to the Internet. It is no longer news that there is a huge growth in the number of connected mobile phones in Africa. It is likely you are reading this from your phone or tablet.
For those of us who use an Internet enabled phone around, there is need for us to be aware of the security implications. I made some finding recently when I asked a couple of people if they store personal information on their mobile phones. Among the common things that people consciously store on their phone are: passwords, International passport number, bank and card details, calendar, contacts etc.
There are also those information stored unconsciously too, like; location data. Recently in the US, Google and Apple were summoned to explain why they collect such data without letting the users know. For now, I am talking about the information you store consciously and can have control over.
When you make purchase online via your phone or tablet, your card details will be stored on your phone for easy use next time. This is done for your own good in good faith.
What will be the result if you lose your phone? It all depends on the kind of information you have stored on your phone. Imagine if you have some personal photographs that you won’t want to see on the Internet. If you lose your phone and you do nothing about securing the phone and the contents there in, you leave room for the contents to be stolen. This can pose some risk to you.
Your personal emails and your private chat conversation can be viewed too. If you use your phone for work and thus have some documents stored, you know how risky it is to have a total stranger peeking into the phone. Someone once told me he uses his Blackberry as USB drive on the go (so much information stored). Imagine losing your USB, laptop and all that is in it. It is not just going to be about the loss, but about a stranger now having access to your personal documents.
Security is a personal thing and how you chose to go about securing the content of your phone is all left to you. However, it is important that you are aware and become conscious of the implication if your phone (tablet) along with your vital information is stolen.
How do you secure your mobile phone? Do you have any idea? Please feel free to share in the comment box below.
In the next article, I will be sharing with you some measures you can take to secure your phone and prevent access to your phone data in case it is stolen. I have interviewed a few people who have shared with me how they secure information stored on their phone.
There are different aspects of phone security we’d be considering in the future. Some have to do with downloading applications, clicking links in email, Facebook and Twitter.
I am excited about the findings and I hope you will be too.
Image via freedigitalphotos