A new study shows how 93% of participants have no problem sharing the secret number of their phone, exposing access to all your personal and sensitive information.
An experiment by the universities of Würzburg and Nottingham Trent, showed the high dependency evidence that young people have of their “smartphones”. And it is such an appreciation for their mobile phone that more than a third (37.4%) value it equally to their friends while nearly 30% put it ahead of their parents and 20% appreciate their phones more than their partners.
In the experiment, the participants had to put in order people and objects by importance: 37.4% puts his phone on the same level as his close friends. Or above them.
29.4% of respondents said that their “smartphone” was just as important, or more, than their parents. Not only their families but 21.2% of respondents said that their phone was just as important, or more so, than their partner. In addition, 16.7% rated it as one of the most important things; and 1.1% said their device was the most important part of their lives.
The experiment also asked participants to place images in order. While family, friends and pets in general were located closer to the participant’s smartphones; others as co-workers or classmates passed into the background, placing their “virtual friends” over them.
“Our phones are an important part of our lives, and this study provides psychological tests on it. Our connection with these digital friends reflects that we put an incredible degree of confidence in an inanimate object. So much so, that we consider it a even closer and more important than many other people in our environment, says psychologist at the University of Wurzburg, Astrid Carolus, who led the study.
The PIN number, uncovered
With this in mind, we were surprised to see it was very easy to get the phone PIN codes out of people. People were invited to sit in a waiting room for a period of time, and then asked about their height and PIN code. Without much hesitation, the vast majority gave them away. This is worrying because it indicates that we are ready to put our family, friends and digital data we store in a risky situation.
Despite the value given to devices as a source of entertainment, information and data storage, participants have no objection to share the PIN number, exposing access to all your personal and sensitive information. During the experiment, 93% of participants gave their PIN when they asked.
According to the CEO of Kaspersky Lab Iberia, Alfonso Ramirez: “Following last year’s study of Digital Amnesia it demonstrated the strong emotional connection we have with our phones.”
“Another interesting finding was how-continuous-people rate their smartphones as an object much more important than their laptops or other devices with the same degree of information, highlighting the symbolic role of digital phones. Many users forget to secure their phones as they see them almost as an extension of themselves, and this can make them vulnerable to cyber-criminals.”