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10 Defenses Against Smartphone Theft
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Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
11/27/2013 | 12:47:06 PM
Wake up, people
I find it simply amazing that people on the street completely ignore their surroundings and allow themselves to become as absorbed in their cell phone conversations as if they were safely ensconsed in the safety of their own homes. These devices can cost $500 and more; they are almost as good as cash, and these people are setting themseves up for a mugging. No software program can protect someone from their own stupidity
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
11/27/2013 | 1:15:25 PM
Re: Wake up, people
>No software program can protect someone from their own stupidity

But hopefully raising the issue can make people more aware without the wake-up call of being victimized.
Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
11/27/2013 | 1:27:39 PM
Re: Wake up, people
Thomas, you are so right, it's great to raise the issue so that maybe some people will at least start to think about it.

I wonder if it's a good guess that, with cloud computing becoming an ever greater factor in everyone's digital life, more and more of the overall expense of using these these devices will be in various subscriptions to different online services and programs, and less and less in the physical device itself? That way, loss of the device will be less costly, and less profitable to any malefactor.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
11/27/2013 | 3:45:15 PM
Re: Wake up, people
> more of the overall expense of using these these devices will be in various subscriptions to different online services and programs, and less and less in the physical device itself...

 

I suspect that's true. Within a decade, I expect someone (Google or a startup?) in the cloud data business will find a way to make a basically disposable, biodegradeable mobile phone. Another way to do it would be to store important user data in some object that's less easy to lose (a Bluetooth-enabled ring or belt buckle chip) and to pass it to the phone wirelessly as needed.
J_Brandt
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J_Brandt,
User Rank: Ninja
11/27/2013 | 5:25:30 PM
Re: Wake up, people
As I recall, IBM envisioned some time ago the personal body network.  Between your smart phone, blue tooth ear piece, smart watch, and Google Glasses it's a start on that.  Perhaps we will add the ring, belt bucking and other things.
Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
11/27/2013 | 6:52:00 PM
Re: Wake up, people
@Thomas & J_Brandt
What a great set of ideas!
In a sense, my present PC is almost "disposable," in that I have very, very few programs installed on it, and I use mostly a subset of the programs offered by Windows 7. Everything interesting or new is accessed via browser on the cloud. If the machine was totally wiped out by a virus, I wouldn't have much more to do than re-install windows. Compare that to a few years ago when I'd have to spend hours and hours of misrery re-installing a bunch of feisty, tricky programs from CDs, and then waiting overnight until they are updated over the internet.
Certainly, it's to be hoped that smartphones follow a similar path

 
samicksha
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samicksha,
User Rank: Strategist
11/28/2013 | 4:03:42 AM
Re: Wake up, people
Leave your phone at home..

I guess its matter of week or two, i forgot my phone at home and left for office, suddenly in mid way i realized, unfortunately i travelled 8 KMs to get my phone above this it had some 15 missed calls including few of my BOSS...This point is really hard to consider.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
11/28/2013 | 5:54:31 PM
Re: Wake up, people
@samicksha: That's the problem with having a cell phone to begin with!  People expect you to be always, constantly available -- and get mad when you're not.

Life becomes a lot easier and less stressful once you embrace the notion that you have your phone for your convenience -- and no one else's.
samicksha
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samicksha,
User Rank: Strategist
11/29/2013 | 4:26:43 AM
Re: Wake up, people
I agree you Joe on your point about availability, and becomes more relevant if Mobile screen pops with BOSS CALLING...lol.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 7:39:17 PM
Re: Wake up, people
@samicksha: There are times that can work for you though -- to extract yourself from situations you'd rather not attend to.

I know of at least one app that lets you fake phone calls.  You set the timer for when you want it to "call" you, and your phone will ring and act as if you have an incoming call from any particular contact of your choosing.

It will even play one side of the conversation to give you prompts, in case you are unimaginative.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
11/27/2013 | 2:58:18 PM
Re: Wake up, people
What a whole scam on the insurance bit! I never even realized that these wireless carriers that try to be all cute and cuddly on television commercials are fleecing people in the form of this ridiculous insurance. 

Okay, it does make sens for people who are using their devices in harsh environments or are perhaps a little more clumsy than the norm, but what about all of the rest of the people paying these premiums and geeting ripped off as a result?
wht
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wht,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2013 | 2:04:09 PM
Re: Wake up, people
What about those looking at their phones so intently they bump into you on the sidewalk, or walk into traffic at the intersection, not looking or even realizing they are no longer on the sidewalk! 

I recently saw a guy in his 20's listening to music with earbuds walk into a busy 2 lane road.  He stayed on the center line about 100 ft, never looking back for traffic that was approaching him from a signal light that turned green in his direction, then he slowly moved to the center of the lane for another 150-200 ft before angling towards the curb and sidewalk.  It was almost dark then and a miracle he was not run down by someone who didn't expect a pedestrian in the lane!  This was 1 block from a Calif State University campus in an area where students park in a residental neighborhood to avoid paying for parking on campus.  I though about honking my horn as I passed, but that might have caused him to make a bad maneuver and get hurt.
pcw
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pcw,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2013 | 3:23:55 PM
Re: Wake up, people
It's all about greeds.  Wireless carriers won't do anything when you report lost phone.   Carriers know the "serial number", IMEI, of each activated phone; they just simply don't care about your lost.  You may google the internet and find out how Australia handles the stolen/lost phones.
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
11/27/2013 | 1:02:50 PM
Find My iPhone
The first time you leave the iphone somewhere public, you realize the value of having this option -- and having password protected the phone. And you will leave it somewhere. It is a matter of when, not if.
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
11/30/2013 | 1:00:00 PM
Re: Find My iPhone
Laurianne, yes even if only a small proportion of users forget their phones in public, the proportion that do actually forget it will realize the value of creating a provision to take over in the event that it does happen. Better to be safe than sorry.
WKash
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WKash,
User Rank: Author
11/27/2013 | 1:41:53 PM
Data vs Devices
The sooner we move to smart phones that rely on data kept in the cloud instead of on their devices, the better.  InformationWeek contributor Ashok Sankar, who works with the Defense Department's classified data networks, makes a good case about that elsewhere on the site. See "Keep Data Off Mobile Devices & Away From Adversaries" by Ashok Sankar http://add.vc/fZy #

 
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
11/30/2013 | 1:03:46 PM
Re: Data vs Devices
WKash, thanks for the link, it fits in nicely with this article. All this talk has remember me that I should backup my phone just in case.
Shepy
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Shepy,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2013 | 7:22:52 AM
Be wary
"7) Be aware of your surroundings
We've all seen them. People who meander down the sidewalk, staring at their phones, forcing others to take evasive action to avoid a collision."

This is one of the most important ones imo, ive seen people with no idea what's happening around them practically begging to have that multi-hundred dollar device snatched from them. There's a few videos about of CCTV of kids on bikes stealing and riding off before the victim knows what's happened practically.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
11/28/2013 | 5:51:56 PM
LoJack
Considering pepole have used laptop LoJack and similar software to spy on people in private situations (including law enforcement and the people at the company themselves), I think I'd rather just have to buy a new phone.
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 6:14:01 PM
Re: LoJack
@Joe Stanganelli,
You can't really blame the technology for the way is used, can you?
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 7:43:18 PM
Re: LoJack
@mak63: Of course not...but that's just the point: it's how the technology is used.  Any service provider selection should be made with a view of how the technology will be used by the provider, how your privacy will be respected and protected, and what rights you have.
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Ninja
11/28/2013 | 8:29:02 PM
Don't buy insurance?
I agree with most of these tips but the one about not buying phone insurance doesnt make sence to me. Just because someone doesn't get the insurance is going to mean they take care of it better? I would love to see a study on that.

I generally dont buy phone insurance because I am careful with my phone and so far I have been good. my daughters phone is a different story. She has broken more than a few so it's worth it. But for something that helps protect it from getting stolen? I dont see it.
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 7:34:23 AM
Re: Don't buy insurance?
Paul,

Some people rely on their insurance, and that makes them be careless. If they don't buy insurance for their phone they may become more conscious about what they do with it, where they put it, how they handle it. 

Pleanty of times phones are stolen because the owner is almost yelling "here, see how easy it is to take my phone from me". 

-Susan
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 1:18:28 PM
Re: Don't buy insurance?
I understand the reasoning I just don't agree with it. People who are careless with their phone will be regardless of insurance. IMO.
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 1:22:43 PM
Re: Don't buy insurance?
Paul, 

Well, that's true, too. I am like you. I am careful, and don't have insurance. 

-Susan 
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
11/29/2013 | 7:24:05 AM
Leave your phone at home

"It's easier said than done. But you can't lose what you don't have. Shocking though it may be, people used to get by without mobile phones. Try it once in while, if only to highlight your device addiction."

Everyone should try this at least a week in your life. Not only it will be a week with no worries about your phone being stolen but also you will learn about the degree of dependency you have with your phone.

You will discover new ways of getting around without looking at your screen, and you may actually enjoy not being reachable once in a while. :D 

I did it as part of a project. I got interesting results. :) 

-Susan
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
11/30/2013 | 11:12:26 PM
Works both ways
A thought just occurred to me: The problem with taking published advice in technology media regarding effective-yet-easy-to-remember password formats is that password crackers read the same advice.


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