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Shopping for a New Mobile Device?

phoneinTrash2The new iPhone 5s and 5c are now available.   Are you thinking about getting one or another new device?  Out with the old and in with the new, right?  Mobile device manufacturers are constantly coming out with new devices consumers can’t wait to get their hands on.

It is estimated that mobile devices are often replaced for newer models every 18 months.  What are people doing with all those old devices?  Old devices that are turned in are usually refurbished and resold so make sure you clear your devices of all of your information before discarding them.

Devices contain stored information

Most mobile devices today have the capacity of storing a lot of information.   Here is a list of information which may be stored.

    • Web browsing history
    • Outgoing and incoming text messages
    • Contact details for everyone in your contact list which may include personal and work telephone numbers,  and email and home addresses
    • Pictures
    • Call history

External storage cards

If your device allows for any external storage such as an SD card, make sure you remove the card before discarding the device.   The card could contain sensitive information or photos you don’t want the next owner to have access to.

Reset devices to factory standard

The best practice when disposing your device is to reset it back to the factory standard.  Resetting your device puts it in the state it was in when you first purchased the device, clearing it of all of your information.  Just know that once you do this you will no longer be able to access your information.  Be sure to back up any information you wish to keep.   For more information on resetting your mobile device, check your owner’s manual or visit the website of your device manufacturer.

There is nothing wrong with wanting the latest devices.  Just be smart and clean the information off your old devices before turning them in or recycling them.

Christina Bonds

Christina Bonds is an Application Specialist in the Web Technology department at Elon University.

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