Thursday, April 24, 2014

Are you careful when it comes to privacy?

Image from I'd Pin That!

Do you stay logged in all the time? Do you remember to factory reset when getting your phone repaired?

This week I took my phone in to get the screen fixed. It was free, but I will be getting a better case for it when I get my phone back.

Because I will be without my phone for a week, I was given a loan phone. I took it, didn't think anything of it until later when I had charged it a little and I had notifications for Facebook, email and so on.

But I haven't logged in?

No. The person who used the phone before me was still logged in, to everything! They hadn't logged out or reset the phone. I was shocked. For starters, the store promises to do it, but because I don't trust anyone, I do it myself.

Before getting my phone repaired I made sure it was fully backed up then did a factory reset to clear it.

If I was not a nice person, I now had total access to this guy's details for everything and could have done anything I liked. But I didn't. I remembered his name, factory reset the phone, then sent him a private message on Facebook from my account on my laptop, informing him what had happened. He said he didn't know how to do it and the shop had said they would, but clearly hadn't. he was also grateful to know and that I wasn't using his details.

Getting your phone repaired is not the only reason to log out or factory reset or be cautious with privacy.

I have a pin lock for my phone so no one can pick it up and just read it.
I delete a lot of messages after they have been read, unless really important. There are some I have locked or screenshot, but for the most part I delete. This has caused a few funny scenarios, but for the most part is good.
I move pictures to my laptop or to the cloud so I have copies.
I have logged out or uninstalled a lot of apps too.

It's not that I think anything will happen, or live in fear. I don't. These are just habits I have formed which protect my privacy. You don't need to be connected or logged in all the time.

Do you know how to reset your phone? Do you make sure to wipe, delete or log out when necessary? If a thief grabbed your phone right now, what would they have access to?

8 comments :

  1. Even though I have a smart phone, I probably don't use all of its features the way many people might. I rarely use it to make purchases or complete banking transactions - though I've done this in the past. And I don't usually save passwords on to it. However, I do have a lot of emails loaded. So, I guess knowing how to factory reset my phone would be a good idea. But first, I'd need to figure out how to back it up!

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    1. That's good you don't use it for purchases etc. Back up can be surprisingly easy.

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  2. I also installed a feature on mine that allows me to find it if I misplace it (essentially overriding the volume setting, as long as the phone is on), or if I realize it's lost I can remote wipe it.

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    1. I love that feature! It's amazing what technology can do now.

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  3. That guy is lucky to have had a responsible person be in possession of his old phone. This example goes to show that it can be worth it to take extra measures to avoid risks, and how a little bit of effort might prevent big problems later. Also, don't always count on others to look out for your best interest in perfect fashion.

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    Replies
    1. Absolutely. A little effort can go a long way and ultimately it is up to us to protect our privacy etc.

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  4. I've become more and more careful with protecting my privacy. I'd rather not go through the task of trying to get my identity back, so I take the small precautions now so that bad things can be avoided.

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    Replies
    1. Exactly. It is such a process and a nightmare to try and get your identity back.

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