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What to do if your iPhone is stolen

iPhones aren’t just a hefty investment: they come with us everywhere – to work, on holidays and evenings out. They also contain a treasure trove of personal information. As a result, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the steps you need to take if your iPhone is stolen.

Precious photos and videos aside, we increasingly rely on our phones to carry out many of our daily communications and transactions, linking them to our debit cards and email accounts without a second thought.

If our devices fall into the wrong hands, we can find ourselves saddled with eye-watering phone bills and worrying data breaches.

Thankfully, there’s plenty you can do to protect your iPhone and its contents. From utilising the security measures offered by the Find My app to contacting your Internet carrier, all is not lost if a theft occurs – especially if you’ve backed everything up!

Make sure you’ve got reliable cover from day one of your iPhone ownership. Apple smartphones come with considerable price tags attached, so it’s a smart move to protect your investment with a specialist insurance policy – after all, you can never rule out the possibility of your device getting stolen, lost or damaged.

Gadget Cover offers that covers theft, unauthorised usage, damage and more. We’re here to help you protect your iPhone, so take a look at our tips on what to do if your device is stolen.

Use the Find My app

If you enabled the Find My app previously, you can use it to locate and recover your iPhone and keep your personal information secure.

Either use the Find My app on an alternative Apple device or sign into your account at icloud.com/find online. You can then check your phone’s whereabouts by tapping the Find iPhone option.

Select the device you want to locate: choose your iPhone in order to view a map pinpointing its location. If your iPhone is close by, you’ll be able to generate a sound that will help you or someone else recover it.

If you’ve activated Family Sharing, another family member can help you out by signing into iCloud with their own Apple ID. They can then pinpoint any device linked to your Family Sharing account.

If you’re certain your iPhone has been stolen, report the theft to the police. They may ask for your iPhone’s serial number; you won’t be able to refer to your physical iPhone, but you can still locate your device’s serial number in the following places:

  • On the original packaging it came in.
  • By going to your iTunes preferences and selecting the Devices tab.
  • On the original receipt or invoice issued when you purchased your iPhone.

You should also let your network provider know that your phone’s been stolen. Once you’ve informed them, they can suspend your account, barring all texts, calls and data use from taking place on your iPhone.

 

How do I lock off my stolen iPhone?

To lock your iPhone, you’ll need to use the Mark As Lost function.

Once you’re on the Find My app or iCloud site, select the Devices tab and then select your missing iPhone.

  • Find the Mark As Lost option and select Activate. This will remotely lock your stolen iPhone by generating a new passcode.
  • Select Continue, then, if you wish, you can enter your phone number so it will show on the Lock Screen of your iPhone, enabling anyone who recovers your phone to call you and let you know it’s been found.
  • If you want, you can also choose Next and type a custom message asking anyone who reads it to contact you and return your missing iPhone. After this, tap the Activate option.

Once you’ve activated Mark As Lost, Apple Pay will be disabled – if it’s installed on your iPhone – and the primary email address linked to your Apple ID will be sent a confirmation message.

If you’re able to recover your iPhone later, you can unlock it with your personal passcode.

How do I remotely erase the contents of my stolen iPhone?

Our iPhones hold a lot of private data so if yours gets stolen, you might want to remotely wipe the contents so thieves can’t get their hands on it.

By selecting the Erase This Device option, you’ll be able to wipe your personal data, such as details of cards associated with Apple Pay, along with credit and debit card details.

Be warned – once you’ve done this, you won’t be able to locate your phone using the Find My app.

Follow these steps to remotely erase your device:

  • Go to the Find My app and then select the Device tab.
  • Select your iPhone as the device you wish to wipe.
  • Scroll down to find and select the Erase This Device option.
  • Click on Erase This Device.

 

What should I do if I haven’t activated the Find My app?

If you haven’t enabled the Find My app, unfortunately you won’t be able to use it to track your stolen iPhone.

However, you can still take several safeguarding measures to protect your private information:

  • Report your stolen phone to your wireless carrier: this will block others from using your device to send texts, make calls or use data, saving you from a potentially hefty phone bill.
  • Report your stolen phone to the police.
  • Reset your Apple ID password: once you’ve done this, no one else can access Apple services such as iCloud, iTunes and iMessage from your stolen iPhone.
  • Reset passwords for accounts linked to your iPhone – Facebook, your email accounts and any others you’re concerned about.

Protect your iPhone

You can take every precaution, but it’s impossible to rule out the chance of theft occurring. iPhone insurance is an absolute must-have, should you invest in an Apple handset, as these devices are expensive to replace should they become damaged, lost or stolen.

Gadget Cover’s iPhone insurance covers theft, unauthorised usage, damage, loss and more. Our policies also include low excess fees, the first month free on packages paid monthly and unlimited claims.

Don’t put it off: get a quote today.

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