Even if you're not paying attention, your cellphone always is. Many cell phones, PDAs and other evils and blessings of modern communication use flash memory that's harder to really erase than you might think. And if you sell or give away your phone when you're done with it, there's readily available software that can retrieve a lot of it.
A company, Trust Digital of McLean, Va., bought 10 different phones on eBay this summer to test phone-security tools it sells for businesses. The phones all were fairly sophisticated models capable of working with corporate e-mail systems.
Curious software experts at Trust Digital resurrected information on nearly all the used phones, including the racy exchanges between guarded lovers.
The other phones contained:
-One company's plans to win a multimillion-dollar federal transportation contract.
-E-mails about another firm's $50,000 payment for a software license.
-Bank accounts and passwords.
-Details of prescriptions and receipts for one worker's utility payments.
The recovered information was equal to 27,000 pages - a stack of printouts 8 feet high.
"We found just a mountain of personal and corporate data," said Nick Magliato, Trust Digital's chief executive.
It's likely you could catch an actual disease if you accidentally did this with Lindsay Lohan's phone, so watch out. The surest method to erase all that sensitive information on your phone? Truck tire. But it's bound to ruin your seller rating on e-bay.
Read the whole thing here.