Remotely Destroy Cell Phone Data

Getting over the loss of misplacing or having your cell phone stolen can be difficult for anyone, especially for those who store sensitive data on it.
While acquired cell phones have a certain value on the black market, the personal data stored on the phone’s SIM, internal memory or flash drive can hold its own worth in the wrong hands.
Identity theft is an increasing problem all over the world, and this day and age of mobile storage and could computer, keeping your data from prying eyes is evermore important.

How to remotely lock your cell phone

Thankfully, most modern cell phones have the ability to lock your phone, rendering it useless, even if the SIM card has been changed.
First off, you will need to obtain your phone’s imei number. This 15 digit number can be found underneath your cell phone’s battery or on the bar-code of the phone’s box.
If you can’t find the imei number, you can press *#06# to display the number on the screen. This number is unique to each cellphone, write it down and keep it safe.
Now if you phone gets stolen, you can call your service provider and give them this code. They will then be able to block the phone regardless of whether the SIM has been replaced.
Another great tip for the firm believers in the kinder side of human nature, is to program your phone to display your email address. Some phones will even display the email address when your phone is locked. This way you are not revealing too much information, but if an honest person does find your phone, your contact information is available.
If you prefer to catch the thief in the act, you can try accessing your latest bill. If you can not do this online, your network call center should be able to provide you with a recent call list.
If you find that the thief has made calls on your phone, try calling the last number dialed and telling them that you have found their friends phone. With any luck, they will give up a name and an alternative number for the thief.
Certain smart phones offer their own solutions for wiping the data on your stolen cellphone, for example:

Apple iPhone

Apple’s $99-per-year MobileMe service offers Mac users the ability to push e-mail, contacts, and calendar entries to the iPhone (among other things). But one key feature, first announced in March and later introduced with iPhone OS 3.0, lets MobileMe users perform a remote wipe on a lost or stolen iPhone. It’s found under Account -> Find My iPhone -> Remote Wipe. It can also display a message on the phone’s screen, like “please call Jamie at 718-555-1212 if found.”

Palm Pre

All Palm Pre owners set up a Palm Profile when first activating their new devices. The Palm Profile lets users back up settings, receive over-the-air updates, remotely erase a lost or stolen handset.

BlackBerry OS

Any BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) handset can be erased remotely via the Erase Data and Disable Handheld IT administration command over the wireless network.

Android OS

SMobile Anti-Theft for Android is a $19.95 app that can erase both the handset and any SD card data.

Windows Mobile

Microsoft’s new My Phone Windows Mobile service, currently in beta, lets users locate lost handhelds via GPS and erase their data remotely.

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