By November 30, 2012

Lookout finds there are over 28 million old mobile phones going unused in the UK

Lookout

Lots of people will be upgrading to a shiny new mobile phone this Christmas, but what are people doing with their old phones? A survey by Lookout has found there are over 28 million old mobile phones going unused in the UK today.

Other key stats from the survey (over 1,900 people in the UK were polled) include:

· 55% of people have one or more unused mobile phones at home

· 16% said they haven’t parted with their old phone/s because they have not erased the information on them

· 52% said they would be willing to give their old phone to a charitable cause

The survey found personal data and privacy were a top concern for people, so Lookout has provided some tips for to help people move on from their old phone.

Lookout, the leader in mobile security, conducted a survey to learn there are over 28 million old mobile phones lying unused in homes across the UK. This number is set to rise dramatically as people upgrade their mobile devices this Christmas. According to Canalys, 33 million new smartphones will be hitting store shelves this holiday season, being the gift of choice for Christmas.

Phone hoarders are a major contributor to this old phone epidemic with 55% of people in the UK admitting they have one or more unused mobile phones at home (20% have one, 16% have two, 7% have three and 12% have four or more).

Despite an increasing number of alternatives to dispose of old phones, there are a number of reasons why people leave them unused in drawers and cupboards.

· A quarter said they just don’t know what to do with their old phones.

· 16% said they have not yet erased the information on their old phones.

· 8% said they are concerned about the information on their old phone being exposed.

· 10% said they wanted to access their information and apps on their old phones.

However, nearly 52% of people who said they would be willing to part with their old phone said they would give it to a charitable cause. A further 21% said they would trade it or sell it for money while 14% would throw it away or recycle it.

“We were surprised to learn how many people hold on to old phones,” said Jenny Roy, mobile safety advocate at Lookout. “People are concerned about the personal information living on the device, and we suspect it contributes to why people are still holding on to it. Before you donate, resell or recycle your phone, it’s important to take steps to remove the data so if your phone gets a new owner, your information doesn’t get exposed.”

Most of the barriers stopping people from offloading their old mobile phones are easily solved. Lookout recommends a few easy steps so people can say goodbye to their old phones forever.

1. Save the data. If you want to keep the data on the phone, there are a few ways to transfer your personal information. If you have an Android smartphone, you can download Lookout Premium (£1.99 per month/£19.99 per year) to backup photos and contacts, and restore data to a new device. iPhone owners can use iCloud to store important data.

2. Before saying goodbye, wipe the phone clean. It’s important to remove data off of the phone before reselling, donating or recycling. For Android, Lookout Premium can wipe personal information, restoring the phone to its original settings. For other device types, do a Google search on how to conduct a factory reset. Factory resetting will restore an old phone to its original state, erasing apps, photos, contacts, call logs and more.

3. Remove the SIM and SD card. Remove the SIM and SD card (if the phone is equipped with them) before disposing the phone to ensure that your information cannot be passed on to a potential future owner.

Once people have transferred their data and wiped their old phone, there are a number of ways people can give away their old device. A simple online search provides a number of options including giving it to a charity, recycling it or reselling it. For example, Barnardo’s, the UK’s biggest children’s charity recycles mobile phones to raise funds for their work to transform the lives of vulnerable and disadvantaged children.

John Ellis, Head of Recycling at Barnardo’s said, “Many people don’t realise that we can accept old mobile phones in addition to other donated items. We are able to recycle these to raise even more funds towards keeping our children’s services running. It’s always worth remembering this when you’re clearing out cupboards and drawers.”

 

Posted by: James

Posted in: Press Releases

About the Author:

Five year veteran of the site. BlackBerry specialist, but experienced in most operating systems. Enjoys flower arranging and cross stitch.
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