10 Important Things to Know About Smartphone Thefts

1 - 10 Important Things to Know About Smartphone Thefts
2 - How Do They Get Stolen?
3 - When Are They Stolen?
4 - It's Not Just the Cities Where Smartphones Are Stolen
5 - The Consequences of Phone Theft Are High
6 - Places and Situations to Watch For
7 - Going to Great Lengths to Get Your Life Back
8 - Putting Ourselves in Harm's Way
9 - Keep Your Smartphone in Your Pocket
10 - Act Quickly to Recover a Phone
11 - Protect Your Phone When You Travel
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10 Important Things to Know About Smartphone Thefts

by Nathan Eddy

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How Do They Get Stolen?

Forty-four percent of smartphones were stolen because the owner left the phone behind in a public setting, 14 percent were stolen from a car or house that was burglarized, and 11 percent were stolen off the victim's person—out of their hands, pockets, purses or bags.

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When Are They Stolen?

A significant number of smartphone theft victims said their devices disappeared in the middle of the day, not late at night. For example, 40 percent of victims said their smartphones were stolen between lunch time and the end of the work day (between 12 p.m. and 5 p.m.), compared with 18 percent of victims whose phones were stolen between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

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It's Not Just the Cities Where Smartphones Are Stolen

While 55 percent of thefts happen in urban environments, one-third of phone thefts occurred in suburbia. Still, it's worth noting that the survey revealed 15 percent of urbanites reported that they had two smartphones stolen.

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The Consequences of Phone Theft Are High

Close to half of those who had their phones stolen (47 percent) reported a time/productivity loss, while 10 percent reported loss of confidential company data. Nine percent had their identities stolen, and 12 percent said they experienced fraudulent charges on their accounts.

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Places and Situations to Watch For

According to the survey, 16 percent of smartphones were stolen in a restaurant, 11 percent at a bar/nightclub (so watch your drink count), a disconcertingly high 11 percent of smartphones are nabbed at work, 6 percent while on public transportation and 5 percent were stolen right on the street.

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Going to Great Lengths to Get Your Life Back

Fifty percent of phone theft victims would be somewhat likely to extremely likely to pay $500 to retrieve their stolen phone's data, including all photos, videos, music, apps and private information, while one-third of victims would be somewhat likely to extremely likely to pay $1,000.

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Putting Ourselves in Harm's Way

In a further signal of the decline of rational thought in a supposedly advanced society, 68 percent of phone theft victims said they would be willing to put themselves in some amount of danger to retrieve a stolen device and the precious information on it. Presumably suggestive selfies play some sort of role.

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Keep Your Smartphone in Your Pocket

The majority of phone theft victims, approximately 44 percent, experienced a theft because they accidentally left their phone behind in a public setting where it was later snatched by a thief. So the next time you are at lunch, keep your phone in your pocket, and have a conversation or read a book instead, maybe.

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Act Quickly to Recover a Phone

Regardless of when your phone was stolen, the study strongly indicated time is of the essence to recover it. Only 25 percent of phone theft victims noticed their phone was stolen immediately, and roughly one in two victims noticed in the first hour.

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Protect Your Phone When You Travel

Fancy a trip to Europe? According to survey results, your inklings to keep your phone tucked away are warranted. Europeans are more likely to be victims of pickpocketing than Americans (roughly 28 percent in Europe, versus 11 percent in the United States).

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