Effective data destruction practices should be carried out by businesses that provide mobile handsets to their staff.
This is the view of Avast Software, which published a study showing that individuals typically fail to properly wipe the memory of these devices before they are sold on.
Avast purchased 20 mobile phones from online auction site eBay and set about recovering as much data as it could from the devices, with the results being somewhat surprising to all involved.
Indeed, president of mobile at Avast Jude McColgan commented: “The amount of personal data we retrieved from the phones was astounding.”
Overall, the company was able to retrieve more than 40,000 stored photos, 750 emails and text messages, in excess of 1,000 Google searches, over 250 contact names and email addresses, as well as one instance of an individual’s loan application in full.
The results highlight the need for companies to implement an effective data deletion policy if they plan to recycle hardware in the future, as failing to do so could leave them wide open to a range of data breach incidents in the future.
For peace of mind that end of life data is permanently destroyed, contact Kroll Ontrack for cost-effective and compliant end-of-life data erasure solutions.