Help!!! iBook stolen!

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by cnotley, Mar 3, 2004.

  1. cnotley macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2003
    Location:
    NYC
    #1
    Hi.

    My iBook was stolen a few hours ago. I know there is software - where, if you install it on your OS and then your computer is stolen, that it can "track" if the thief connects to the internet on your computer. Unfortunately I did not do that and there is really important info that I hadn't backed up on my iBook (I am a professor). I have heard that there are ways to track it through the serial number etc. - does anyone have ANY possibilities or suggestions or help? Please. I have not reported it to the police yet only because I am hoping someone who is knowledgable might be able to help me figure this out.... Thanks.
     
  2. Calliander macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2004
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    #2
    Notify Apple with your serial number and see if they can do anything. Also, go to local Apple Stores and AASP's and let them know, too. They can keep an eye out for your machine based on the serial number.

    Good luck!
     
  3. cnotley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2003
    Location:
    NYC
    #3
    Thanks - I am contacting Apple now - I just heard that somehow it is possible for an ISP to be aware of a serial number of a computer when the computer connects - so I thought that if I notified the local ISP's of the serial number that somehow they might be able to help? I don't know - any suggestions on tracing it through internet connectivity and the registered serial number?
     
  4. rdowns Suspended

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #4
    I don't think that's possible. Sadly, your computer has probably already been sold, reformatted and some as*hole is using it. Might want to look in safeware.com for your next computer.
     
  5. applemacdude macrumors 68040

    applemacdude

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Location:
    Over The Rainbow
    #5
    I am sorry for what happened to you, anyways contact the police just so they can have a record. Contact Apple, if anyone tries to re-intall panther or whatever and they re-register then apple will receive the theif's info....sorry
     
  6. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
    #6
    Along with the serial number each machine has an ethernet id. They have this on file and can probably remotly detect it.
     
  7. cnotley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2003
    Location:
    NYC
    #7
    Awesome - thanks. How would I go about locating the Ethernet ID - would Apple have it on file - or could I get it from the IT department at my college (where I teach and had it connected when it was stolen)? When you say "they" in reference to tracing the ethernet id, who are you referring to - any ISP that provides ethernet connections - or any ISP in general - or Apple? Just curious. I did speak to Apple and if the guy formats the HD and installs OS X on it then he will be asked to enter the serial number of the computer - and since Apple has the serial number of the computer (and it is in their databases as stolen) when the computer sends the info to the Apple server it theoretically should "red flag" it - where we go from there I have no clue. Please elaborate on the ethernet ID - thanks again.
     
  8. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
    #8
    Who has the ethernet id? You- if you kept your box, and network admin who looks at the ids of the users, apple in their prduct database. If we lived in a perfect world there would be a system that would alert all networks of stoles ethernet ids and call th cops, but the chances are slim of your computer being identifies by this.BTW, not to get kick you when your down, but when you install os x its askes you to regester. If someone knows its how, they can opt out. I just dont want to give you false hope. Sorry about your luck. Jim
     
  9. Stelliform macrumors 68000

    Stelliform

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    #9
    Every network card produced has a unique MAC address. (Mac or PC) It is 6 pairs of hex numbers. (like 9F E6 45 3A 48 B2) If I remember correctly the MAC address for my computer was on the sticker on my TiBook's box. Any ISP can read your MAC address when the server hands out the address to that specific network card, but if the laptop stays behind a router the ISP will never see the MAC address for your laptop.
     
  10. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus

    SilentPanda

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Bamboo Forest
    #10
    A suggestion (too late now but for future)... I got insurance through the same people I get renter's and car insurance from. Insurance specifically for my iBook G4. It costs me... $2.50 a month I believe. Yeah. Two dollars and fifty cents. Covers breakage and theft up to $2,000. Plenty enough to get me a new iBook G4. Might want to check into that.
     
  11. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #11
    It'll probably be traded for drugs or will soon find it's way to e-Bay.

    But the only way to have a chance to get it back is file a police report and then search e-Bay for the machine.

    If you do find it on e-Bay you may be able to get it back if you do find it, of course it's one computer and the police may not have the time to arrest somebody for selling a single computer.
     
  12. janey macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #12
    MAC addresses for the wired ethernet card is usually on a sticker right underneath the keyboard above the AirPort slot where there's this bar code with the specs of your machine, or if its Airport, on the card itself. Thats for G3 white iBooks though.
    MAC addresses are unique 12 character addresses in hex that sort of resemble ipv6 addresses, except not as long (ie 00:30:66:23:5C:29, btw that is not one of mine :p)

    Good luck on finding your iBook :(
     
  13. MacRAND macrumors 6502a

    MacRAND

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix AZ USA
    #13
    Mac IDENTITY

    Right after I purchase & Register a new Mac (not often) I make a Contact Card for it including the Birth Date, S/N, Ethernet Number, and all the stats I can glean from Apple's System Profiler. I do the same upon purchasing an AirPort card, Hard Drive, external SuperDrive, iSight, printer, scanner, virtually everything Mac.

    Then, I send the .vcf contact file by eMail (or carry it by ContactFlash) to my other Macs and open the file in Entourage's Address Book on the other computer, so I have duplicate information on each Mac in each of the other Macs.

    Lose one Mac, the other Macs provide the ID information.
    Lose all of them at the same time, who cares :(
    It's time to take a flying leap off something, especially if I failed to backup recently.
     
  14. sparkleytone macrumors 68020

    sparkleytone

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2001
    Location:
    Greensboro, NC
    #14
    contact a network admin and give him your MAC info. this is on the box it came in. it usually starts with 00. there is a good chance whoever took it is an idiot and has plugged it in a few times trying to get network.
     
  15. eRondeau macrumors 6502a

    eRondeau

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2004
    Location:
    Canada's South Coast
    #15
    iBook Stolen...

    (My first MacRumors posting!)

    Realistically your computer is probably gone for good. It has been sold for $75 work of crack. But regardless, make sure you provide your local police department with all possible serial number interpretations to increase your chance of getting it back. (Computers have lots of numbers on them, the serial number is just one of them -- and it may not be obvious to somebody who doesn't know which of the numbers is the true serial number. If they add all the possible numbers onto the police computer file, a search on any of them will point back to your theft report.) And when you get your new replacement iBook, maybe consider putting a tiny little sticky label under the removable keyboard with your phone#, first name, and car's licence plate number or drivers licence on it. If a service shop finds it, they can call you. If the police find it, they will run your licence plate and get hold of you that way.

    One more thought -- does your computer automatically connect to your e-mail account??? If so, maybe send "yourself" an e-mail message so that if the new owner of your computer is smart enough to plug it in to a phone jack and run "Mail" he will soon see a message from you! You could offer him a cash reward for return, no questions asked, or just call him a jerk.

    Man, that just sucks. The brand new G4 iBooks are sure sweet, though.
     
  16. SiliconAddict macrumors 603

    SiliconAddict

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2003
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #16
    *winces* This has to hurt on an emotional and monetary level. Sorry. :(

    The big question is where this was stolen. If its at a college (You being a professor.) campus its a good bet that someone will keep it and use it at their own. If this is the case its a somewhat trivial matter for an admin to locate the Mac address off of your computer. That's assuming you know it. If not it's going to be next to impossible to track it down. Here is the big question. Did they get all the accessories with the laptop? If not there is a good bet they might stop at a compusa or apple store to purchase a new one. Admittedly its possible they my get it off the net but I'd think they would try for something local to get the system up and running as soon as possible. Also unless you carry the CD's with you its unlikely the system has been formatted yet. We aren't talking Windows here where you can pop in a boot disk and dump dos on the system. MOS, from what I understand requires the original install disks to redo the system. Unless this guy makes it his hobby to steal Macs he's probably not going to have the software on him. In which case to reorder those CD's he'd probably have to go through Apple and at that point probably provide the serial number. I'd have to agree with everyone. Time is of the essence. Call Apple. Report it stolen. Call your local compusa and ask them to keep an eye out for someone looking for a power adapter assuming they didn't nab that as well. Then call the nearest Apple store and report your laptop stolen. Finally call the police and report it. The cops are the least likely to track down something this soon. IMHO getting Apple involved is the most important.
     
  17. janey macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #17
    dont forget passwords and crud...the person would need an OS install disk to get past it.
     
  18. abhishekit macrumors 65816

    abhishekit

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2003
    Location:
    akron , ohio
    #18
    I am sorry to hear that man....if you got your ibook with a credit card, and its fairly new(the ibook),,its automatically insured,..so u may wanna check the credit card agreement too..coz my credit cards have that, but theres certain time limit..i dont remember what it is..
    hope you get your ibook back
     
  19. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    #19
    you will probably never see this laptopl again. it has more than likey been sold for a low amount and then in the hands of someoen else. talk to your insurance company and see if anything can get done. when you get your next laptop, invest in the program lapcop and buy yourself a lockdown. remember, your laptop grows legs when your not watching

    iJon
     
  20. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2003
    #20
    siliconaddicts advice is perfect.

    my guess is a student stole it since you a professor. not to insult you but judging by how you ask the question you didn't know how MAC address stuff worked. Apple should have your mac address on file considering when they ship laptop it on the side of the box on a sticker. you network admin should have a log of it. what i am getting is probably, the person who stole it doesn't know anything about mac address either and he will probably give himself away on campus. tracking him from an external isp will be hard. i would also checkout near by pawn shops and read the bulletin boards on campus for an ibook for sale.

    i would recommend you purchase an external hard drive, and for the most sensitive data keep a usb pen drive on you. what i do with the pen drives is i own two identical ones. one for work and one for personal use. i have a marking on the of the drives that tells me which one is which and no one is the wiser.
     
  21. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #21
    That's mine! :eek:
     
  22. superbovine macrumors 68030

    superbovine

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2003
    #22
    i have this verison of nermal the cat going :eek: then beating the crap out of garfield.
     
  23. saabmp3 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Tacoma, WA
    #23
    If you work on a college network, tell the IT dept to flag the MAC address. Most colleges and universities flag the MAC's and can tell when it gets plugged insomewhere (and where). Your lucky it was on a college network, I know around here it's actually as high as 50% of laptops get found because of this.

    BEN
     
  24. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #24
    Yeah OK, I don't have a very creative username :rolleyes:
    But you made me laugh :)
     

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