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Australians encouraged to mobilise their mobile phone privacy
Three Federal Government agencies have joined together to encourage Australians to think about privacy and security when using their mobile phones.
"Mobile phones are used for so many different things, and the amount of personal information that we store on them can be significant - particularly when you consider how easily they can be stolen or lost," said Australian Privacy Commissioner Karen Curtis.
"There are many simple things we can all do to protect the information on our phones. But many of us are simply not aware of what they are."
To assist mobile users to protect their phones, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, the Australian Communications and Media Authority, and the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy have issued guidance material in the form of a pocket-sized quick reference guide.
The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, said the guide is an important initiative to raise awareness of mobile phone security.
"Australians are increasingly using a variety of devices to access the internet and it is important that people are aware of how to protect their personal and financial information online," Senator Conroy said.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority chairman, Chris Chapman, said the guide would assist families and young people.
"With nearly a third of Australian children aged 5 - 14 now having their own mobile phones, we are hoping these simple tips will help families become more cybersmart about how to protect themselves and their phones," Mr Chapman said.
The guide gives mobile users the following tips:
- 1. Always know where your phone is - do not leave it unattended
- 2. Turn on your security features
- 3. Set a password or PIN
- 4. Report your lost or stolen phone
- 5. Turn off Bluetooth and GPS when you are not using them
- 6. Be careful when opening multimedia messages (MMS), attachments in emails, and clicking links in emails and text messages
- 7. Check for software updates regularly
- 8. Be careful of the wireless (Wi-Fi) networks you use
- 9. Don't save passwords or PINs as contacts in your phone
- 10. Permanently delete all data from your phone when you recycle or replace it.
The guide can be viewed and ordered from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner here.