Mobile Safety Common Sense: 10 Things You Should Never Do With a Cell Phone

News Analysis: The NTSB says people shouldn't drive while talking on a cell phone. That's true. But that's not all people shouldn't do with cell phones.

The National Transportation Safety Board is making headlines, saying that it wants a nationwide ban on drivers using a cell phone while a vehicle is in motion. The organization says it's a major cause of vehicular death and could be one of the key ways in which people can improve their safety while traveling.

There are several states across the United States that have bans on talking on a cell phone while driving, including New York. Those states have claimed that by implementing the policy, they've been able to increase road safety. Critics, however, say that it's not nearly as bad as some think and enforcing the law, no matter how useful it might be at improving safety, is nearly impossible.

The fact is, driving while talking on a mobile phone is dangerous. But it's not the only thing that people should never do with mobile devices. In fact, there is a wide range of activities that mobile device owners engage in each day that can cause them bodily harm orgreatly impact their privacy and security.

Read on to find out the top things that people should never do with their mobile devices:

1. Drive while talking

Let's just get this out of the way: Driving and talking on a cell phone is dangerous. As numerous studies have shown, talking while driving can be as dangerous as driving drunk. Quite often, people who talk on the phone while driving will find that they sometimes forget where they are and what they're doing. It's a serious issue, and it shouldn't be taken lightly.

2. Losing a smartphone without password protection

Too often, smartphone owners leave their devices in a public place without password-protecting them. So anyone can walk over to the handset, access its software, and start looking through emails, browsing history and more. All smartphones must be password-protected.

3. Access banking information

Although most banks now allow users to access their accounts from a smartphone via downloadable applications, it's not always the best idea. Earlier this year, a survey showed that, in many cases, banking applications lack security features needed to make using them safe. It's best to access banking sites at home.

4. Download applications from unknown sources

Android handset owners have gotten into trouble for downloading programs created by unreliable sources. Upon doing so, the applications installed malware on their devices, and all kinds of trouble ensued. Never download applications from unknown sources. Those who do typically find it's more trouble than it's worth.

5. Share personal information over unsecured networks

Since smartphones aren't running Windows, many people believe that the operating systems on their devices are secure. But that's not the case. What's worse, because they can connect to any WiFi network, there's no telling if data transmitted over that connection is secure. Therefore, it's best to never share personal information over unsecured networks; it's too easy for that data to be stolen and used against users.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...