Christmas the worst time for losing mobiles say London cabbies

Shopping spree shenanigans blamed

Londoners forget around 10,000 phones and 1.000 other portable devices, such as MP3 players, laptops and memory sticks, a month.
“It’s a known fact that this is the worst time of year for forgetting property at the back of cabs, but especially mobile phones and laptops as they slip onto the floor or get forgotten on the seats as passengers rush onto their next destination with their hands full," said Steve McMenara of TAXI, the magazine of the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association.
The problem is that the many of these devices can store as much as 4,000 pictures, 20,000 Word documents, 200,000 emails or 500,000 contacts, making them an obvious target for identity theft.
Sean Glynn, a vice president at Credant Technologies, said: “If you don’t want to worry about the consequences of losing your mobile, with all those embarrassing text messages and pictures, or laptop with valuable personal and company information then protect that data using encryption and/or passwords. The technology is available, so why not use it?”
Credant offers a series of tips designed to help ensure that losing your mobile or laptop doesn't mean  losing your entire personal and corporate identity.
- Back-up your mobile device regularly

- If you have important and sensitive company data on your mobile device get your IT department to encrypt it - they can do this remotely – meaning only you can read it!

- Use a strong password on all your devices which combine numbers, letters and symbols

- Put your name and number with details of a reward on your device if found and returned

- Use your devices' security features, such as the PIN, to stop others getting access to it

- Use your head - don't keep data on your laptop or mobile phone that others could use against you

- Don't save old SMS or emails on your handset that you don't need - you'd be surprised how many people keep their default password emails on their mobiles and other hugely sensitive information like PINs, bank account details or passwords

- Clear out your message folders (drafts, saved and outbox) and delete any numbers you no longer need from your call lists

- Physically mark your handset with personal information, to reduce its second-hand value if stolen

- Record your IMEI: every mobile phone has a unique 15-digit electronic serial number that can be referenced by dialling *#06#

- Notify your network carrier and the police immediately in the event of loss or theft. Tell them your IMEI number and any other identifying features on your phone. And if the device contains company data, tell  your employer as well

- Don't leave your device open to access (eg by leaving Bluetooth or WiFi on, visible and unsecured)

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