Mobio. What does it do and how safe is it?

Posted: January 7, 2011 in apps, iphone, organization, software, technology
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Technology.  You can either go along with its changes willingly or be dragged along kicking and screaming.   Either way, it is changing and you are going to have to deal with it.

One of the big changes is the way we handle our personal information, especially how we handle it electronically.   Mobio, or Mobio id, is a simple solution that enables you to store your personal info such as phone numbers and addresses as well as more important and easier to forget info such as credit card numbers and expiry dates etc.   So often I am in need of my credit card info for online purchases and not anywhere near my wallet, but seem to always have my iPhone nearby.  Or I forget that silly little PIN for my credit card while i’m standing in the checkout line trying to pay.
You can check out Mobio here.
Right now it is a free iPhone/iPad Touch app or free Android app only, but the Blackberry app is supposedly on its way, so don’t despair you poor BB users are not completely left out, just a little behind.
Mobio is a way to store personal data such as credit card info, store card numbers, collector numbers, frequent flyer cards, etc.,  in the hopes of making your life easier, but my fear is that what happens when you leave your phone laying around by accident.  Not only does the person who finds it have your phone but now full access to your credit cards as well? As we become more and more reliant on our smartphones, they become more ingrained in our lives and filled with info that is vital to our day to day use.  So how do you keep all that info safe and easily accessible without worrying about it being misused or exposed accidentally?
Apps like Mobio or any of the Password/Info storage apps out there are typically password protected, most commonly they are the same as Mobio and use a 4 digit code, which if assuming the numbers 0 to 9 are used with repeat numbers allowed that is 10 to the 4th, or 10 x 10 x 10 x 10 (or for the math challenged 10,000) possible combinations.  Not exactly Fort Knox but hopefully enough of a deterrent for most people who may try and get your stored info.
But Mobio is more than just a password wallet, that is not really its main purpose at all.
Mobio is a way for you to scan QR codes and use them in new and wonderful ways such as paying for lunch at a restaurant, buying products online or in stores, scanning items you want more info about, basically anywhere that uses or anything that has a bar code/ QR code on it and supports electronic payments.  The hospital in London had a few advertisements up in the corridors that have QR codes in them that link you to their websites for more information.  (I did a short blog post about them a little while back that explains QR codes a bit better – link is here)
They are out there and once you start looking for them, you’ll notice how prevalent they are becoming.
Right now the places that allow you to use Mobio as a form of payment are few and far between, especially up here in the frozen north, but like anything electronic that can be done with smartphones nowadays, it will catch on fast.
People that use smartphones jump at the chance to use them in any new way possible, almost as a way of justifying the monthly expense it seems.  I fully admit that I will seemingly go out of my way to use my iPhone for things that could have been done other ways (iHandy Level app for instance – I mean really, how often do you think “if only I had a small level with me?“)
What it all boils down to is this.  Put only the personal information on your smartphone you are comfortable with and try it out for a while.
I’ve been using Mobio for a month or so and add more info to it all the time, but everyone needs to make up their own minds as to where that comfort level lies.
I’m an old cynical dog when it come to trusting people or things, but i’m becoming more and more comfortable with letting Mobio store my personal info every day.
  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by thatcomputerguy. thatcomputerguy said: New blog post… Mobio. What does it do and how safe is it? […]


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