Consumers Know Risks, But Don’t Protect Their Mobile Devices

Cyber attacks aren’t news to most consumers. In fact, most are already aware of the risks from spam, malware and phishing. But that doesn’t mean they’re doing anything to protect their mobile devices or data.

A recent survey from CTIA-The Wireless Association found that 85% of consumers believe their mobile devices are vulnerable to cyber attacks, but most don’t implement measures to protect themselves. Of those who do implement security features on their mobile phones and tablets, they’re more likely to protect against tangible threats such as physical loss than intangible threats such as hacking or malware.

The most common security feature that consumers use is an app that can remotely locate, lock or wipe a lost or stolen device, such as Apple’s Find My iPhone utility. The new Activation Lock feature, which Apple announced Monday, requires your Apple ID and password before you can turn off Find My iPhone or re-activate a phone after it’s been wiped.

That’s all well and good for protecting your phone if it’s stolen, but those types of security measures don’t do anything to protect against hackers and malicious apps. While 91% of consumers protect their laptops with anti-virus tools, only 31% do the same for their mobile devices.

One reason might be because fewer than 1 in 5 consumers think of their smartphone as a mini computer, even though the same type of sensitive data is just as likely to be on a mobile phone as it is on a laptop.

So instead of thinking just about protecting your mobile phone, start thinking about protecting your sensitive data — no matter which computer or mobile device you use to access it.

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