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Stay secure – how to keep your data safe when recycling your old mobile phone

Article image for Stay secure – how to keep your data safe when recycling your old mobile phone

Health trackers, bank details, addresses, emails, social media accounts… in a lot of ways, your mobile phone knows more about you than you do these days!

With the rise of smartphones, never before has so much of your personal information been held in such a compact, transportable device. But what happens to that precious data when you drop your handset in the sink or it’s time to upgrade it to a newer, flashier model?

Right now, it’s estimated that around 23 million old mobiles are stashed away in the kitchen drawers around the country. But while an Ipsos survey revealed that 75 per cent of Aussies know that recycling their handsets is an option, only eight per cent of us actually follow through. A lot of that hesitancy is down to security concerns surrounding the personal data that’s packed into these little devices.

Keeping your data safe
Managing your data and recycling your mobile has never been easier. MobileMuster is Australia’s government-approved mobile phone recycling program. The program is free and accepts all brands of mobile phones and related accessories at their 3500 nationwide drop-off points, which include Telstra, Vodaphone, Optus, Samsung and Officeworks stores. To make things even easier, they also operate a free post back facility. Simply download a label from their website or head to your local AusPost to collect a free post satchel. MobileMuster is committed to helping you recycle with peace of mind about your data. They have created two short, easy to follow videos which step out exactly what you need to do.

Simply follow the steps in the MobileMuster ‘How To’ video – choosing the right version below for your type of handset.

How to manage the data on your phone (iOS)

How to manage the data on your phone (Android)

Step one: Back it up
Transfer all the files and information you want to save to your computer or online storage.

Step two: Log out
Using apps such as Facebook or Gmail? Make sure you have signed out of all accounts on your phone and disconnect any devices that are linked to your handset, such as an Apple watch or Fitbit.

Step three: Reset your handset
Once you’re certain you’ve saved all of your data from the handset, it’s time to reset it to factory settings. This is sometimes called a hard reset or a master reset. It will erase all the personal details and data and return your mobile to how it was when you first took it out of the box. No apps, no contacts, no settings – all gone! Finally, remove the SIM and memory card. And you’re done!

But my phone won’t switch on?
Don’t worry, you can still recycle your handset with the knowledge your data is completely secure. MobileMuster ensures all personal information is safely destroyed during the recycling process. With electronic waste, or e-waste, growing at three times the rate of general waste, there’s never been a better time to take action and clear out that bottom drawer.

Further information about mobile recycling can be found HERE

For further information on MobileMuster, CLICK HERE