Your smartphone contains a lot of personal information (at the least, your contacts phone and email address). If your phone is lost or stolen, you don’t want that information to fall into the wrong hands.
Certain anti-virus apps for Android smartphones have the ability to remotely wipe your phone’s data in the event that it is lost or stolen. This is known as the “Lost Device Protection” feature which you may have to explicitly turn on or configure.
Webroot Mobile Security Premium has this featured known as “Device Wipe”. Their free version have “Device Lock”, but not “Device Wipe”.
But for it to work, you have to install and configure the app before your phone gets stolen. During configuration, you set a password. If you device is then later lost, you can send a text message to your phone with the password and your phone will delete its personal data.
Other mobile antivirus apps (such as Norton) will well have similar abilities. Although their commands may be different.
For webwoot, the command is …
where YourPassword is the password that you had configured initially. This will delete all data from your phone and there is not confirmation prompt. So do not do this, unless you are sure.
Note that this data delete is not recoverable. So that if later you find you phone, you will not be able to retrieve your data. This command removes all contents on the SD card including photos, videos, browser downloads, contact, calendars events, etc.
Alternatively there is another command….
Texting this message (either from another phone or a web browser text/SMS app) will lock your device so that no one can access it. If you later find your phone, you can access it by typing in the configured password.
Webroot also has the command …
where if your GPS had been turned on on your device, then texting this command to your phone via another smart phone will display your phone’s location on Google maps.
The command …
will cause your phone to blast a loud screaming audio sound to scare off thief or locate device.