Survey reveals discrepancy in mobile security understanding
26 February 2013 - 10:36 by David Aiken
A new report from AVG Technologies has revealed that many consumers have a slightly unusual approach to mobile security, which means they could be putting themselves at unnecessary risk while conversely not taking full advantage of a smartphone's features.
Over 5,000 consumers from Europe, North America and Brazil were questioned over their mobile habits and a quarter of respondents said that they keep images or video footage, that would be considered deeply intimate and private, on their portable devices.
This could clearly lead to issues if the device was lost or stolen, although 70 per cent of those questioned admitted that they had no idea that most smartphones also have the built in option, to allow for the remote deletion of all data, so that privacy is ensured.
The study gets particularly interesting when you consider that only 35 per cent of respondents said that they are happy to use their smartphone to carry out safe shopping online.
A slightly larger proportion (38 per cent), said that they used a portable device for online banking access, with sceptics citing mobile security concerns as the main obstacle to their wider usage of a smartphone's features.
The problem here is of course that it is far more dangerous and potentially compromising to leave sensitive images on a smartphone which could fall into the wrong hands, than to try and shop or bank with it, as long as you are using the correct channels.
Various retailers offer simple ways to conduct safe shopping online from a mobile or tablet, either through a dedicated application or from a version of their website that has been optimised for use with a touchscreen interface.
Consumers need to be taught about the dangers and benefits of using smart gadgets, so that they can understand the security concerns and not get their priorities muddled.