Many people lose their smartphones, especially if they have the latest Apple iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S models. They can be sold quite easily on the market. Smartphones are essential gadgets and many people just can’t live without them. There are steps we should do after we lose our smartphones:
- Change passwords for all accounts linked to our device
- Notify mobile provider to disable the phone number
- Alert friends, co-workers and clients that we have lost our devices
Dealing with a lost smartphone will be much easier if we have been fully prepared for the possibility. Here are things that we should do:
- Make a list of our accounts: We should make a list of accounts that are connected with our smartphone. If we want to include usernames and passwords in this list, we should only write it down at home and keep it at the safest place in the house. Probably not inside the safe, it would be safer to put it in the pocket of shirt or pant that we never use. In this case, the list will be kept inside our wardrobe and any thief will very likely miss them, even if they know what they are looking. If we somehow lose the device, we could immediately visit these websites, starting from the most important, such as online bank service, primary email, social media and others.
- Backup our data: Even if the smartphone isn’t used for productivity tasks, we could still have plenty of essential information in it. As an example, we could have valuable photos and videos that we want to keep. Current smartphones can be connected directly to USB flash drive and we should be able to quickly transfer any important file. The USB drive should be kept in safe places. File backup can performed each week or every few days, depending the amount of information that we need to process each day. We could also connect to cloud services and make an online backup.
- Install tracking app: Just about any smartphone has embedded GPS module. Even if it doesn’t have one, the location of the phone can be pinpointed by the positions of the connected cellular towers. There are many tracking apps in Google Play store and Apple App Store. If we lose our smartphone, we could activate the tracking feature by sending specific text message. If the phone is connected to GPS, we will be able to locate its position almost real time. It means that we could work with the local police force to catch the perpetrator. A good tracking software should be hidden and the thief shouldn’t know that such an app has been installed.
- Install data wipe app: In many cases, it is more important to quickly wipe the data than finding the phone. This is especially true if we could potentially lose a huge amount of money, much larger than the value of the phone itself. We should designate which information that should be deleted when the phone is stolen. As an example, username and password information should be immediately purged from smartphone. Specific apps, especially those for online banking and social media should be automatically uninstalled.