November 15, 2016 | Amy, Exhibition Developer, Science Museum

I sometimes worry about the personal information stored inside my phone - but I didn't realise so much could be identified about me from what's on the outside.

Scientists have tested traces found on adults' mobile phones, revealing a lot about them - from the type of cosmetics they use, to what they like to eat and drink, and medical conditions. Caffeine, spices, antidepressants and skin creams were some of the substances found.

I think this could be really useful. But it's also a bit scary, as so much personal information could be revealed this way.


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Samples from phones and hands were tested and compared with a database of identified molecules.


Image: Flickr/Dru Bloomfield

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