Why It’s Never a Good Idea to Sell Your Cell Phone

If you sell your old cell phone and it gets into the wrong hands, what would someone find?

A list of login passwords nestled in a page on your notepad? An app for your bank with your username and password automatically saved? Or maybe you have an attached email account with copies of pay stubs, financial statements, court documents, and more. Think of everything that’s on your phone right now. A lot of the information you store on your phone can be used by thieves to steal your identity.

Selling Your Cell Phone is Dangerous

Phones are windows into our personal lives, and very easily, those windows can be shattered. The potential for a break-in increases when selling your cell phone. With today’s high tech smartphones, the risks far outweigh the benefits (cash) of selling your cell phone.

The average person upgrades their cell phone every 18 months, which amounts to 130 million devices being discarded annually in the U.S. alone.

In 2010, Americans got rid of 152 million cell phones and other mobile devices—135 million of which made their way to the trash. Cell phones not securely recycled most often still contain all their personal data, expanding the potential for identity theft.

Erasing confidential information may seem like a relief from identity theft, but even that isn’t enough. Clearing the contents of an SD card or restoring your iPhone won’t guarantee that someone can’t access stored data. SD cards are often formatted to allow data to be recoverable.

[Check out this investigative video on personal data from used cell phones being sold by pawn shops.]

A study by CPP Life Assistance found that 54 percent of second-hand cell phones purchased contained personal data such as emails and bank account information from the previous owners. They also purchased 50 SIM cards and 27 of them contained similar private information.

Recycle Your Old Cell Phone with an Electronic Recycler

So, what’s the best solution for getting rid of your old cell phone? Electronic recycling. Your data is guaranteed to be safe and irretrievable when the storage components are shredded. Plus, when you recycle your cell phone with a certified electronic recycling company, the scrap is recycled.

A dedicated shredder can guarantee complete destruction of electronic media to give you the pleasure of feeling safe, secure, and free from identity theft.

Protect Your Information with DataShield

For secure, credible electronic recycling, call DataShield today and we can properly dispose of your old cell phones and free you from the risk of identity theft.

Start protecting your documents and data now.