Social Circles to Social Outcasts: Mobile Manners & Madness

From loud talkers, to people who answer their cell phone while you’re in mid-sentence, there are a number of mobile phone pet peeves that are getting under people’s skin. Microsoft’s Safer Online Facebook poll asked our social media fans; What do they find most annoying about the way people use their mobile phone? Have their ever…and, who is safer?
Here’s what they told us;

Their “Top Five” most selected pet peeves include:
• Constant phone checking (44 percent of the respondents included this in their top five)
• Loud talkers (41 percent)
• Using or not silencing the phone when appropriate, for instance in social settings (40 percent)
• Using the phone during face-to-face conversations (39 percent)
• Delaying traffic (35 percent)

Have they ever…oh yes they did!  Respondents shared with us, a number of entertaining stories; like pocket dialing while singing along to the radio.  This may be simply irritating to some, but it’s a great example of how you may be doing more than just annoying your social circles, or becoming a social outcast. In fact, you could be putting your personal information at risk.

Our Microsoft Safer Online poll found that:
• Nearly half of respondents (47percent) said they have lost their mobile phone,
• Exactly half (50 percent) said they have pocket dialed someone, and
• More than half (58 percent) have shared their location

More often than not, our mobile device has just as much, if not more, personal information on it than our computer.  While our poll showed that men and women believe they are equally safe when it comes to their mobile behaviors, we know in reality, this isn’t the case.

According to our Microsoft Computing Safety Index released earlier this year;
• Men do a slightly better job using technical features:
35 percent use a “PIN” (personal identification number) or password to lock their mobile device vs. 33 percent of women
35 percent use secured wireless networks compared to 32 percent of women
32 percent keep their mobile device up to date vs. 24 percent of women
• Women, on the other hand, tend to be savvier when it comes to protecting their online reputations
Women often take additional steps to limit both their personal information online (40 percent vs. 37 percent), and public information on social networking sites (40 percent vs. 32 percent)
Women are also more careful about what they put in text messages (34 percent vs. 31 percent).

So what can you do to protect your device, information, and reputation? Consider adding just one of these notable habits and practices to your online routine:

#1 Lock your phone with a unique PIN or password.
#2 Limit the apps that can access your location, and think before sharing your whereabouts on social media.
#3 Save financial transactions for a secure network, not public Wi-Fi.
#4 Defend your phone against malware with updates and reputable apps.
#5 Know when to silence your phone and be present with others!

You can take the Microsoft Safer Online Facebook poll and find more information about general mobile phone safety at:  www.microsoft.com/security.  To stay current on today’s online safety issues, “Like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

About the Author
Kim Sanchez

Director, Trustworthy Computing

Kim is a director for online safety and accessibility in Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing Group. She is responsible for delivering strategic communications to worldwide audiences including consumers, government leaders, and other influencers on issues related to family and online safety and Read more »