The guardian newspaper’s technology blog today reported the rather shocking statistic, (obtained from research conducted by mobile and forensics experts Disklabs) that 50% of second hand mobile phones offered for sale still contain personal data from their previous owner (see link to the article below).
Of the 50 handsets bought from resellers on eBay researchers found porn on nine of the devices, while video and calendar information were also still on nine handsets. Personal security information, including home address, credit card numbers and pin numbers were on 26 of the handsets.
Simon Steggles, director of Disklabs labelled consumers naive in their approach to personal data – “The worst thing a consumer can do is hope or assume that the person buying the phone will remove the data,” said Steggles, “Any data left on the phone is effectively open to the public domain. That could be as varied as intimate photos, videos and text messages … People hit ‘delete’ and think that means it is gone for ever, but that’s not the case.”