Health

The risk one in four people take with their phone

A study from AVG Technology reports a large number of cell phone users have taken this surprising risk.

 

Woman eating fruits dessert with iPhone 4s in hands

Istockphoto

In the past few years, smartphones have definitely graduated from the status of convenient method of communication to veritable storehouse of personal information. We’ve entrusted a lot of our lives to six inches of plastic — maybe a little too much.

A recent report from Reuters cites a study done by AVG Technology in the U.S. that found a significant number of individuals are keeping sexually intimate photos and/or videos on their smartphones or tablets.

It found one in four people indulge in this risky practice though there are a few contradictions when it comes to our knowledge about how to protect our privacy and security online.

While 25 percent of mobile users feel that it’s wise to keep private images and videos on their phone, the survey indicated that more than three quarters of mobile users are unaware of the fact that there are security features that can delete sensitive material from your phone or tablet remotely should it be lost or stolen (phew).

The survey also revealed a few other curious quirks about mobile users’ minds. It seems while many of us see little to no risk in keeping a dirty snap or video clip on their phones, that’s not the case when it comes to using their phones to bank or shop online.

The main objection people had to using their phone to check their account balance or pay a bill online or make a purchase was the belief that doing so wasn’t a secure method, according to the survey.

The survey underlines a need to educate consumers about their mobile behaviour said J.R. Smith, CEO of AVG Technologies, in a release.

“This survey has clearly demonstrated that there is confusion in the minds of consumers about what is and isn’t safe or sensible to do with a mobile device,” he said.

Or perhaps Smith is missing another, more obvious point. The survey’s results indicate that one in four mobile users would rather gamble with their personal reputation than their bank balance.