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Nearly two-thirds of Americans are smartphone holders, according to a 2015 PEW Research Center report, and millions of people walk around with vital and personal information in their pockets. According to USA Today, 100 of those people lose their smartphone and all of their personal files and information, every minute.

You’re riding the bus to work or meeting up with a friend for coffee. You set your phone down for one second, or hurriedly shove it in your back pocket. By the time you reach back into your pocket or dig around in your purse, your phone is gone, leaving your personal data and information vulnerable and open.

The type of personal information and data that people store on their phones is costly. Photos, apps that are linked to bank accounts, a list of contacts, confidential work documents, or personal health information, these are just a fraction of all the valuable data that the everyday person chooses to save on their phone. According to a report done by Mozy, an online backup service company, 57% of people who have lost their smartphone said that they were specifically upset about losing their data and not their actual phone.

Once smartphones are lost, the chances that whoever stumbles upon your phone will choose to respect your privacy is slim. In 2012 Symantec, a data security solution company, decided to test the integrity of people who found forgotten smartphones, and recorded their findings in the Symantec Smartphone Honey Stick Project.  The purpose of the study was to determine what people should expect when they lose smartphones that contain confidential business and personal information, and the results aren’t in humanity’s favor.

In San Francisco, L.A, Washington D.C., and New York, 50 unlocked smart phones were intentionally left in taxi cabs, coffee shops, on the bus, and other places with high foot traffic. A mix of corporate data and personal data was stored on the phone, and the reported statistics show that 96% of people who found the smartphones chose to invade the original owner’s privacy and search through the phone.

A high percentage of smartphone users, 89%, chose to open up and browse through personal related apps like social media apps, bank account apps and more. Another high percentage of people, 83%, chose to look through corporate related apps and information, while 70% of people chose to access both personal and business related apps.

After a majority of smartphone finders had their fun scanning through personal and confidential information, only 50% of them decided to contact the original owner and attempt to return the phone.

With all of the personal information that people store on their phones, if lost and found by the wrong person, the following damages can be detrimental.  In the study, Symantec states “A person finding a lost phone is defined as a human threat.”

Macate understands the potential security threats smartphone owners face if their phone is no longer in their possession, and we have developed high security features in our GATCA Elite for mobile data protection.

Enabled with location based technology, the GATCA Elite locks down all chosen confidential documents and files to specific locations. Access to open and read a chosen document is only attainable if the holder of the GATCA Elite is within the chosen proximity. When the GATCA owner leaves work, they can leave knowing that all classified documents can only be opened at work.

Besides location based technology, the GATCA Elite can also prevent unauthorized users to access private info with immediate phone shut down upon SIM removal.

Smartphone loss is common, and Macate’s GATCA Elite can’t stop you from losing your phone, but it can prevent the invasion of your mobile data and privacy.

 

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