The Case of the Missing Cell Phone – RSA 2015

For the past month, IT security companies across all geographies have been head’s down in preparation for the year’s biggest industry tradeshow – the RSA Conference. This year, RSA 2015 attracted over 30,000 security influencers, reporters, analysts and experts alike to talk about – what else – security!

Aside from rubbing elbows with our fellow industry insiders, RSA 2015 was an eventful show for WinMagic. Our days were spent meeting with some of the most knowledgeable analysts and reporters to talk about a topic that we keep very near and dear to our heart – data security. Here at WinMagic, we eat, sleep and breathe data encryption – it’s what we do and we love educating our customers about it.

This year at RSA, we wanted to try a little experiment; according to recent survey results, we found that only 12% of U.S. consumers over the age of 18 are using encryption as a means of securing data on personal devices such as mobile phones, laptops and tablets. This got us to thinking – how can we show consumers that the lack of security on devices that are so important to their everyday lives is a BIG problem that needs to be addressed?

Enter the first annual WinMagic Cell Phone Caper. Here’s how it worked:

WHAT

A real-time analysis on consumer behavior as it relates to lost cell phones.

WHEN

Tuesday, April 21 through Wednesday, April 22.

HOW

Cell phones were strategically placed in areas around the conference with high foot traffic (think hotels, restaurants and standard “meeting spots.”) Cell phones were branded with the WinMagic logo and booth number as a means of encouraging cell phone “finders” to return the device to its rightful owner.

WHY

Because if consumers aren’t using encryption as means of securing their data, losing or having a cell phone stolen is recipe for disaster – even worse if that consumer is using their personal phone for work-related purposes.

THE RESULTS

 

53% of the time, the phones were returned.


The best place to lose a cell phone?
At a bar. 100% of those phones were returned.


The worst place?
An actual conference room. None of those phones were returned.

You’re probably asking yourself, “So you lost a bunch of phones and only half of them were returned, so what?” But stop for a second – given the events of this past year, after all of the media hoopla around major industry breaches like Target, Home Depot, and Sony, you’d think people would start being more careful about protecting their personal AND corporate data, right? Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Consumers are still pretty lax about their security habits and that needs to change. Especially since it looks like they have about a 50% chance of getting back a device that was accidentally left behind.

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