Consumers increasingly adopting safeguards to protect mobile devices against cybersecurity threats

Via CTIA Resource Library

Oct 20, 2017

WASHINGTON – CTIA announced new survey results showing that America’s wireless consumers continue to adopt more advanced security measures for their mobile devices amid ongoing consumer protection and education efforts. The survey, conducted by Harris Poll found that:

  • 77 percent of Americans use PINs/passwords on their smartphones, a 54 percent increase in the last five years.
  • Nearly 50 percent of Americans have an anti-virus program installed on their smartphone, a 58 percent increase in the last five years.
  • Nearly 60 percent of Americans report having the ability to remotely locate, lock and erase software on their smartphones, a 43 percent increase in the last five years.

“The wireless industry continues to educate mobile consumers on the importance of good cybersecurity practices, and these survey results show that more Americans are taking action to protect their personal information,” said CTIA Vice President of Technology & Cyber Security John Marinho. “As cyber threats continue to evolve, the wireless industry will continue to provide consumers with the tools and knowledge to protect their mobile devices.”

CTIA and the wireless industry have long encouraged consumers to be vigilant in safeguarding their mobile devices through initiatives such as:

Smartphone Anti-Theft Voluntary Commitment launched in 2014, under which industry participants agreed to provide remote wipe capabilities on new smartphones among other security measures. Stolen Phone Checker website launched in May 2017, providing consumers the ability to determine if a used or refurbished smartphone has been reported as lost or stolen. By reducing the incentives to steal phones the Stolen Phone Checker helps safeguard consumers. To date, over 37,000 mobile devices have been checked.

Such ongoing consumer protection efforts have helped combat mobile device theft. In New York for example, the NYPD has reported a 35.6 percent decline in robberies of personal electronic devices since 2013.

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