Absolute LoJack Challenge: What if you lost your cell phone?

Everyone knows that cell phones are big business for thieves. In some cities, this is such a large problem that police departments have created special groups dedicated to recovering stolen phones. While you may be able to recover a phone yourself, we really don't recommend it, so some other technical tools are in order.

Many of us have private data on these mobile devices, including usernames/passwords, access to our bank accounts, and photos and videos that we may not want out in the public. So what would you do (or have you done?) when you lose your cell phone? According to Absolute Software, an average of 1.6 phones are lost or stolen every second of every day, so the risk is very real.

To help highlight these risks, Absolute Software is running the "LoJack Challenge," and invited me to go #digitallydark for two days as a way to simulate losing the digital device. While I'll still have full access to my desktop, my mobile device will be completely unavailable. After writing about my "lost phone" experiences, they will then provide an evaluation copy of their LoJack software to review. Finally, they've agreed to provide five copies of their software (for either laptops or mobile devices) to our readers.

Source: Absolute LoJack | Image Courtesy of Absolute Software

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24 Comments

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Planning for the wrost outcome should be on the forefront of every mobile device owner. I've enabled encryption and got the Android tracking feature setup. In event I lose the phone, I'll go and change password for every account I got. Losing a phone is one thing. Allowing access to sensitive data is much worse.

Peace of mind is worth the trouble.

I would just use a cheap Chinese phone. By the time the thief takes it home, the phone would no longer function.

Side Note for WP users...

WP launched with OS integrated tracking, locking, erase, etc. Being hard integrated it isn't possible to bypass, and even works without a data connection (voice/text connectivity).

As for securing content, the storage is already volume encrypted, so even pulling - hardwiring the SD won't allow content access.

Ideas Man said,
Yeah, I can't see what the point in this advertisement is either, at least for WP users.

I have noticed that a lot of people, especially WP users that come from Android/iOS, don't realize they have all these features built into the OS and easily available from the web site portal.

My intent wasn't to jack this story/topic, but to inform/remind users that WP has these features.

Would not phase me at all and DON'T have anything on it other than phone numbers. Most of those numbers are in the phone book even.

A few pics on it, but nothing that would worry me.

I've left my phone at my in laws a couple times in the past. They live about 40 miles away so didn't run back up there right away after it.

I use google android device manager to lock and track it. If i feel i will not get it back soon enough it will be wiped..

No memory and battery eating apps needed. Default options.

I think IPhone has a similar set of tools...

Why am I waiting 2 days? Send wipe command thru Android device manager. Call TMo and have them de-activate the SIM and blacklist the IMEI. Go to store, buy new phone.

Joe User said,
Why am I waiting 2 days? Send wipe command thru Android device manager. Call TMo and have them de-activate the SIM and blacklist the IMEI. Go to store, buy new phone.

The two days without a phone is just an experiment, it's not saying you need to wait two days for these things to happen. That said, many people can't afford to purchase a new phone (so it could take more than 2 days) or are too busy to find time to go to the store to buy a new one.

As for wiping with Android Device Manager, I'll be comparing/contrasting solutions with the review of the software once I get it and will be able to determine what the pros/cons of this solution vs. others is.

Fezmid said,

The two days without a phone is just an experiment, it's not saying you need to wait two days for these things to happen. That said, many people can't afford to purchase a new phone (so it could take more than 2 days) or are too busy to find time to go to the store to buy a new one.

As for wiping with Android Device Manager, I'll be comparing/contrasting solutions with the review of the software once I get it and will be able to determine what the pros/cons of this solution vs. others is.

While I understand that the two days is just part of the experiment, I'm wondering why it's part of the experiment.

As for the second part, I can understand not being able to afford a new phone. In this case I would think that recovering the phone would be the top priority, not erasing data.

My iPhone 4 got stolen (pick pocket)

I went to remotely block it using Find My iPhone but it didn't work. The only hope I have is that the thief never got to use it. I had it tether jailbroken... so hopefully he turned it off straight away and was never able to get it back on again!

Obviously I just used an old phone until my insurance paid out.

That is the risk one assumes when one puts their private information on such a device that just begs to be stolen when used in inappropriate public locations.

That's why I place anti-theft software on my phone that allows me to remotely track and wipe it in the event of theft. Granted it isn't foolproof but as long as it has some form of internet I'll be fine.

Hello,

Ill cut it short: Basically in a few days, Neowin will giveaway 5 copies of LoJack software.

Stay tuned.