Cell phones are more than just a convenience; they’re a lifeline. From personal conversations to online banking, smartphones can help manage your life from the palm of your hand — but not without risks. Stay safe with these four important tips that everyone should know.
1. Keep it locked. Your cell phone is a virtual passport to sensitive personal information, but according to a recent survey done by a leading consumer magazine, 40 percent of users didn’t take the most basic precautions. Experienced thieves can hack any phone, but simple security measures like using password protection make stealing your data less attractive and doesn’t interfere with quick use of the phone if you need to dial 9-1-1.
2. Have stressful conversations at home. The CDC reports that nearly 3500 drivers were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver. Stressful conversations impact judgment and shift a driver’s attention away from the road. If it’s an emergency situation and you have to get the basics, pull over in a safe spot. The details can wait until you reach your destination.
3. Use a hands-free device to protect your brain from cancer. According to experts, there’s insufficient data to conclude cell phones cause cancer, but studies suggest a possible link between long-term cell phone use and gliomas, a malignant type of brain tumor.
Research is ongoing and authorities don’t like to speculate, but scientific consensus is that the radiofrequency waves emitted by your cell phone may put your brain at risk and until more is known, using a hands-free device decreases your exposure to radiofrequency radiation. For children with thinner skull bones, it’s even more critical.
4. Don’t text and drive. Any distraction on the road can be deadly, but an experiment done by Car and Driver magazine revealed that texting while driving affects concentration and reflexes as much as blowing an illegal blood alcohol. In fact, being legally drunk increased braking distance by only four feet, while texting added a whopping 70. It takes just a minute to type a few characters and send, but don’t it. No one wants to the person that gets your last message before a crash.
Cell phones make it possible for you to get it all done, while staying connected to family and friends — but they should never compromise your personal security. These simple precautions are just one of many that can help make your daily journey with your phone a safe one.