ST. PAUL, Minn.--(3M, the maker of 3M Privacy Screen Protectors, is looking to help those in need of privacy by offering ways to better protect private information and the chance to win a getaway for two for those whose visual privacy has been invaded.)--People are nosy. In fact, every month more than 5,000 people take to Twitter to complain about how their mobile device has been snooped on or their visual privacy invaded. Who can’t resist eavesdropping on a conversation or glancing over at what someone is reading or working on? According to a recent survey1, 43 percent of respondents admit to glancing at a stranger’s mobile device, and younger people (ages 18-24) are even more curious with 66 percent admitting to snooping on a stranger’s device.
“We constantly see people using Twitter as a vehicle to comment on how annoyed they are when people are snooping on their device”
Pablos Holman, an expert on hacking, knows better than anyone how simple things – even snooping – can put people at risk for having personal information stolen. “Hacking is really about a mindset to discover what’s possible,” says Holman. “By tapping into the hacker mindset, my goal is to expose potential threats so people can be better informed and better protect themselves against onlookers who choose to violate them.”
3M has collaborated with Holman to learn how hackers think. Holman offers the following advice to protect personal information:
- Don’t travel with corporate branded apparel. Companies love for their employees to be proud of where they work, but when traveling with corporate branded apparel a hacker simply needs to overhear your first name and combine it with your company to be able to unlock your identity on LinkedIn.
- Use a privacy screen protector on mobile devices. When trying to get work done, accessing bank accounts or even shopping online while traveling or in any public place, a hacker can easily snoop and steal any sensitive information on display by simply taking a photo with a smartphone camera and using the information later. 3M makes privacy screen protectors for laptops, tablets and smartphones so you can make sure to protect whatever device you frequently use to access confidential or personal information when in public places from side snoopers.
- Beware of RFID credit cards. Many new credit cards include radio frequency identification tags to allow for easy payment options so cardholders could simply hold their cards in front of a reader instead of swiping it in a machine. Hackers can use an RFID reader to steal your credit card number by simply brushing up against your purse or back pocket. To help protect yourself, use an RFID-blocking wallet or sleeve.
- Use a password manager to help you remember complex passwords. Passwords, especially email passwords, are a hacker’s gateway to unlocking sensitive information. Once a hacker has your email password, they can click “I forgot my password” on any website and start logging in anywhere. People know it is important to have a strong, complex password, but many don’t because they don’t want to forget the password. Try using a password manager to keep track of all your passwords in one place.
- Password protect your phone. Seventy percent of mobile phone users do not password protect their phone.2 If a phone gets into the wrong hands, a hacker could easily gain access to email accounts, passwords, date of birth and countless other personal information that could be used to create fake accounts.
“We constantly see people using Twitter as a vehicle to comment on how annoyed they are when people are snooping on their device,” says Nicola Stevens, Business Unit Manager in 3M’s Mobile Interactive Solutions Division. “We wanted to find a way to help those in need of visual privacy and offer them tips as well as a product solution for this inconvenience.”
The 3M Privacy Patrol is looking to provide those whose privacy has been invaded with the chance to win a getaway.
Here’s how to enter:
- Follow @3Mscreens at Twitter.com/3Mscreens
- Tweet @3Mscreens with hashtag #3MPrivacyPatrol
- Tell us how your mobile device visual privacy was invaded
- Include where and what device was snooped on.
The Privacy Patrol from 3M will also give away five 3M Privacy Screen Protectors for smartphones a week, selected at random from that week’s entries, leading up to the grand prize of a getaway for two to a San Diego resort. People can enter once per day through December 13th.
See the complete contest rules here: 3Mscreens.com/privacypatrol
Win a trip! Follow/@ us how ur mobile device was snooped. Incl where/what device & #3MPrivacyPatrol. Rules: 3Mscreens.com/privacypatrol
3M captures the spark of new ideas and transforms them into thousands of ingenious products. Our culture of creative collaboration inspires a never-ending stream of powerful technologies that make life better. 3M is the innovation company that never stops inventing. With $30 billion in sales, 3M employs 84,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 65 countries. For more information, visit www.3M.com or follow @3MNews on Twitter.
3M is a trademark of 3M Company © 3M 2012
1 According to a 3M survey conducted by Wakefield Research among 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults, ages 18 and older, in September 2012.
2 According to a Sophos survey commissioned in August 2011. http://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2011/08/09/free-sophos-mobile-security-toolkit/