Finding a Better Way to Dispose of Data

Study Finds Data Breaches in Common Lost and Found Practices

Having served as a reliable source for emergency cell phones to law enforcement victim service agencies since 2004, 911 Cell Phone Bank continues to lead the field in data security practices. After a recent study, they discovered that data breach threats are much more common than many initially anticipated, posing a threat not just to those who lose their electronic devices, but the companies who manage lost and found departments.

Surveying a total of 100 lost and found managers in the hospitality industry, 911 Cell Phone Bank found that 46% donated unclaimed electronic devices to charity, 12% handed them over to their local police department, 4% gave it to the employee who found it as a way to incentivize the return, and 1% simply throw them away. Surprisingly, the remaining 37% admitted to having no plan for disposing of lost electronic devices. In all of these cases, lost and found departments are opening up themselves and the original owners of the phone to cyber threats of the worst kind, says the study.

This poses a major problem, says James Mosieur, Director of 911 Cell Phone Bank, commenting: "The results show how important it is for any company that operates a lost and found department to ensure all data on unclaimed devices has been permanently erased." He notes that companies who improperly dispose of lost electronic devices could be exposed to liability if the data breach leads to further harm. At the very least, improper disposal leaves patrons of these businesses vulnerable.

In their study, the company also looked at the type of data found on lost devices, cataloging the information found on 200 randomly chosen SD cards. Of the 200, they found that only one had been professionally overwritten. The remaining 199 contained 155 personal photos, a total of 89 contained material that could be considered intimate or pornographic, 29 contained information that could lead to identity theft, while 20 contained sensitive business information. For a full look at the information available, view the original study here:

The full breadth of data illustrates the importance of properly disposing of lost electronic devices, as well as the need for a service that can handle the job. The vast majority of businesses and individuals do not have the technical expertise to properly delete such electronic data, which leads to the problematic findings outlined above.

To rectify the problem, the company has launched their landmark program, DATA SECURE, which succeeds in safely disposing of unclaimed electronic devices for lost and found departments as well as evidence rooms. Through the program, 911 Cell Phone Bank has been able to guarantee the complete and permanent erasure of confidential data on electronic devices. To take advantage of the program, contact 911 Cell Phone Bank at 866-290-7864 or, or visit their website at

Source: 911 Cell Phone Bank


Categories: Casinos, Amusement and Theme Parks, Travel, Transportation, and Hospitality News

Tags: data breach, data protection, lost electronic devices, smartphone security

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The 911 Cell Phone Bank recycles cell phones, smartphones, tablets and other portable electronic devices for individuals, businesses and public agencies across the country.

Company 881909
626 S Pine Ave
Ocala, FL 34471
United States