Police lost 132 smartphones and tablets in the past year. But although more devices are going missing, police have no concerns over cost or privacy issues.

Figures released to the Herald on Sunday under the Official Information Act show police lost 31 more mobile devices in the year to June than in the previous 12 months, when 101 items were lost.

But with circulation of mobile devices rising to 14,000 across the force, Superintendent Jevon McSkimming said the ratio of lost items was low and there was no cost to the public.

"Compared to how many items are in use, it's a small number. Police pay for a managed service that includes the cost of any replacement devices," McSkimming said.


McSkimming also said there was minimal risk of privacy breaches. "Phones and tablets only open by fingerprints and passcodes and applications are also protected by a further password," he said.

"If a device is lost, it is reported by the staff member and police can remotely wipe a device. It turns the device into a brick, effectively."

Official guidelines are that minimal sensitive, classified or private information is to be stored on mobile devices.

Police confirmed no tasers had been lost over the past five years. Figures for computers, radios and cameras were not available.