Feeds

Sixth of Britain's cellphones have traces of poo on them

Playing Angry Birds on the loo: There are consequences

Boost IT visibility and business value

One in every six mobiles in the UK has got traces of poo on it, according to a new study.

Scientists from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Queen Mary, University of London, found that mobes were typically contaminated with faecal matter because people still didn't wash their hands properly with soap after going to the loo. (Or it could also be because people can't resist tweeting and playing Angry Birds while they're in the middle of a particularly stubborn bowel movement.)

The study, released ahead of Global Handwashing Day held on 15 October, also showed that the British tend to lie about their hygiene habits.

"Although 95 per cent of people said they washed their hands with soap where possible, 92 per cent of phones and 82 per cent of hands had bacteria on them. Worryingly, 16 per cent of hands and 16 per cent of phones were found to harbour E coli – bacteria of a faecal origin," the study's canned statement said.

Researchers travelled to 12 cities in the UK to take samples and ask questions. They found that Brummies had the most contaminated phones, with 41 per cent of them carrying E coli, but the dirtiest hands were found on 28 per cent of Londoners.

"This study provides more evidence that some people still don't wash their hands properly, especially after going to the toilet," Dr Val Curtis from LSHTM said in the statement.

"I hope the thought of having E coli on their hands and phones encourages them to take more care in the bathroom - washing your hands with soap is such a simple thing to do but there is no doubt it saves lives."

Faecal bacteria can survive on people's hands and on surfaces for hours at a time, especially in warmer temperatures away from sunlight, and it's also easily transferable.

While E coli can result in nothing more than a mild stomach upset, it's also linked to fatal cases of food poisoning. Such an outbreak occurred in Germany last June, for instance. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
LOHAN packs bags for SPACEPORT AMERICA!
Spanish launch goes titsup, we're off to the US of A
Gigantic toothless 'DRAGONS' dominated Earth's early skies
Gummy pterosaurs outlived toothy competitors
'Leccy racer whacks petrols in Oz race
ELMOFO rakes in two wins in sanctioned race
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
Boffins build CYBORG-MOTHRA but not for evil: For search & rescue
This tiny bio-bot will chew through your clothes then save your life
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?