This staggering report from industry analyst firm IDC – coupled with NPD Group’s recent discovery that connected devices in the US now outnumber people in the US – either signals an apocalyptic rise of super-machines or civilized human advancement. Or perhaps both.
From AVG’s perspective, the proliferation of smartphones long ago captured the imaginations of hackers across the planet. As more people use these mobile devices to manage finances, families and jobs, they became fertile ground for thieves looking to swipe a few gems. Or the whole jewelry case. And now that we can use our smartphones to remotely control our cars, kitchens, home security and entertainment systems, it’s easy to see how we all should be concerned about ensuring the utmost security while we use our smartphones and when we replace them.
It also stands to reason, based on IDC’s and NPD’s research, that most of us have discarded a smartphone or two over the years as we upgraded to the latest and greatest. Many of us have drawers at home that function as electronics’ graveyards, holding all the cracked and sullied vestiges of bygone ages. Or perhaps we donated those devices to charities or passed them down to our children or even shipped them off to be recycled. Of those scenarios, when it comes to data that may linger, the drawer is probably the safest of all those places.
I say all of this because in the race to keep up with the times, there come to exist multiple archives of our most personal transactions – from text messages to bill payments. It’s risky enough to have this on a single device, let alone many.
So I encourage us to think very carefully about our individual mobile footprints. Take action to secure all the devices in your own life and your family’s life, even if they’re lodged in cobwebs. And be sure you know how to delete content for good.
May 14, 2013