Mobile device security woefully lacking among US adults, survey finds
More than two in five of U.S. adults who own a smartphone report they rarely or never use a password to lock their device, according to a survey of 2,041 U.S. adults by Harris Interactive on behalf of identity theft protection firm Experian.
Additionally, 47 percent of adults who own a tablet indicate they rarely or never use a password to lock their tablets.
The survey found that 46 percent of adults write their Social Security number on job applications, medical forms and other documents, and 29 percent say they carry their Social Security card in their wallet or purse.
Although most U.S. adults say they take steps to secure their digital information, more than half do not always check to see if a website is secure before shopping online. In addition, more than three out of five adults who have online accounts do not use a unique password for each of their online accounts.
The survey showed that 57 percent of online shoppers do not always go to sites directly, but instead click on links, which increases their risk of visiting a fraudulent site designed to capture the visitor's personal information.
Among U.S. adults who have a social network profile, only 36 percent manage their privacy settings on an ongoing basis. Many may be exposing themselves to fraud by allowing certain information to be public, such as educational background, date of birth and email address.
These poor information security practices are contributing to unease among U.S. adults about the security of their personal information. Two-thirds of respondents believe that they will be the victim of identity theft sometime the future, while 61 percent do not think it would be difficult for a person to steal their identity