Article | 2:22 min read

Protect Your Smartphone from ID Theft


It is no secret that personal information theft is a growing problem. The culprit? Your connected devices, such as your smartphone, tablet, and laptop.

A person using a tablet and a computer

When you stop and think about how connected these devices are to the different aspects of your life, it can be a cause for concern. Your credit and debit cards, financial accounts, and location information, along with countless other data is most likely stored on your phone. This is why it’s not a bad idea to make sure your connected devices are secure.

In a global study conducted by OnePoll for Intel Security, it was discovered that the largest percentage of consumers - 44% - are concerned that someone is compromising their devices to steal their financial information. The concern that someone is compromising their devices to steal their identity comes in at a close second with 37% [1]. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to quell these concerns:

  • Keep a password on your phone. If it were to be stolen, the thief would not be able to access your information because the phone locks down for an extended period of time after a certain amount of incorrect password entries.
  • If you have an iPhone, be sure that you have Find My iPhone activated.
  • Change the password to your Internet gateway or router regularly. Speaking of passwords, make sure these are different for all of your online accounts and websites, making them harder for hackers to access.
  • Access your account information using a protected network.
  • Don't use easy to guess passwords and make sure they use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols.

The United States Government website has provided general tips to protect yourself from identity theft including:

  • Don't respond to unsolicited requests for personal information (your name, birthdate, social security number, or bank account number) by phone, mail, or online.
  • Watch out for “shoulder surfers.” Shield the keypad when typing your passwords on computers and at ATMs.
  • Pay attention to your billing cycles. If bills or financial statements are late, contact the sender.
  • Review your receipts. Promptly compare receipts with account statements. Watch for unauthorized transactions.
  • Shred receipts, credit offers, account statements, and expired cards, to prevent “dumpster divers” from getting your personal information.
  • Install firewalls and virus-detection software on your home computer.
  • Change your passwords if a company that you do business with has a breach of its databases.
  • Order your credit report once a year and review to be certain that it doesn't include accounts that you have not opened. Check it more frequently if you suspect someone has gained access to your account information.

If you suspect suspicious activity on your financial accounts, such as unknown large purchases, notify your bank as soon as possible. They will be able to help you take corrective action. Taking these simple precautions now can lead to less worry and stress about your security in the future.


[1] 44% Concerned About Personal Info Theft Through Their Connected Devices, MediaPost

The information provided in these articles is intended for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as the opinion of Central Bancompany, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and does not imply endorsement or support of any of the mentioned information, products, services, or providers. All information presented is without any representation, guaranty, or warranty regarding the accuracy, relevance, or completeness of the information.