It’s hard to grasp just how much we rely on our smartphone until it goes missing. A stolen or lost iPhone isn’t just a security risk, it represents the potential loss of work and personal data. You’re apt to feel extremely vulnerable when your device goes missing.
The Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police Department has noted how small electronic devices such as iPhones have become a primary target of theft, because they can be so easily concealed. Here are four steps you can take to recover a lost iPhone.
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1. Gather information
Your iPhone has a unique serial number that can help authorities track it down when it’s lost or stolen. You can find the serial number on your phone’s original packaging, a sales receipt, or your iTunes backup file.
Write down a description of your missing phone, any include any noticeable damage or unique accessories you’ve attached to it.
2. Use “Find My iPhone”
Sign into the Apple iCloud website with your Apple ID and click on “Find My iPhone.” If your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi or a cellular data connection, it will display your device’s current location.
If it’s been misplaced, click on “Play Sound” to see if you can locate your phone. This feature will cause your iPhone to play a loud alert, even if it’s set to silent mode.
However, if you suspect that your iPhone has been stolen, do not attempt to confront the potential thief on your own. If you’re worried about a stranger getting access to your personal information, then enable “Lost Mode” and set a passcode lock, so unauthorized users cannot get at your data.
3. Tell the police
Contact the police with all the information you have been able to gather about your iPhone. If you’ve pinpointed a location using Find My iPhone, then let the police know.
Keep them updated when the location changes. Let the authorities investigate suspected theft, so they can safely recover your mobile device.
4. Mobile replacement
If your phone goes missing for many days, you’ll probably have to explore a replacement option, so you can renew communication with your work and personal contacts. Purchasing a brand-new iPhone may not be an affordable option for you. In that case, you can find a wide array of new, inexpensive smartphones available through online vendors.
Losing your iPhone or having it stolen can be an extremely trying ordeal. You can minimize data loss by backing up your data to your computer or to iCloud on a regular basis.
Note down your serial numbers and any other identifying information so you’ll be ready to prime the authorities to assist in the search if the unthinkable happens.