Poor guy lost his iPhone!!! Help me find him!

TerryHan103

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 24, 2010
1
0
I found an iPhone the other day and it was out of battery. Upon charging it on my laptop i found I couldn't find the owner because the phone was password protected and therefore I couldn't get any information (e-mail and such) All I know is his name which showed up on the phone. I then followed procedures I found on this website that told me to hold the power and home button for 25 seconds which then restored the phone to factory settings and now I have no information on the guy. I now know his number which is now invalid (not surprised, I'm sure he would have cancelled his account immediately) and his name... what to doo???
 

lionheartednyhc

macrumors 65816
Jul 13, 2009
1,024
3
I found an iPhone the other day and it was out of battery. Upon charging it on my laptop i found I couldn't find the owner because the phone was password protected and therefore I couldn't get any information (e-mail and such) All I know is his name which showed up on the phone. I then followed procedures I found on this website that told me to hold the power and home button for 25 seconds which then restored the phone to factory settings and now I have no information on the guy. I now know his number which is now invalid (not surprised, I'm sure he would have cancelled his account immediately) and his name... what to doo???
Why the hell would you restore someone's phone?
 

FoxMcWeezer

macrumors regular
Nov 4, 2009
113
0
You should have used the SIM card to try to get his number somehow. Like put it in another AT&T phone then called yourself. Then tell AT&T about it, or just give the phone and SIM to AT&T/Apple Store
 

yayitsezekiel

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2008
619
0
Irvine, CA
I found an iPhone the other day and it was out of battery. Upon charging it on my laptop i found I couldn't find the owner because the phone was password protected and therefore I couldn't get any information (e-mail and such) All I know is his name which showed up on the phone. I then followed procedures I found on this website that told me to hold the power and home button for 25 seconds which then restored the phone to factory settings and now I have no information on the guy. I now know his number which is now invalid (not surprised, I'm sure he would have cancelled his account immediately) and his name... what to doo???
i appreciate you trying to help, but restoring it probably wasn't the best idea
 

Meatball

macrumors regular
Aug 24, 2006
120
0
Can you not phone AT&T, explain what's happened and quote the IMEI number so they can check what account it was used with? I'm not sure about the US but in the UK whenever you put your sim in a phone a record is kept with the network :)
 

gixxerfool

macrumors 65816
Jun 7, 2008
1,037
674
Maybe it's just me, but there seem to be alot of lost iPhones with password protection on them. Am I the only one who doesn't use it?
 

jayenh

macrumors 6502a
Nov 13, 2008
507
14
Take it to the police. That is unless you intend keeping it for yourself! :rolleyes:
if he intended to keep it for himself why would he post on a forum that he found an iphone and pretend to strangers, that otherwise wouldn't have a clue about the situation, that he wants to return it?

Maybe it's just me, but there seem to be alot of lost iPhones with password protection on them. Am I the only one who doesn't use it?
i password protect, but i jailbreak and use lockinfo. i'd just make sure my gmail account had an unread email with a phone number in the subject saying "lost - call xxxxxxxx please" so it's always on screen.

OP, take it to ATT or something, they should be able to track the owner from the disabled sim? either that or the police, but they wont seek the owner, they will wait for him to come looking.
 

Meatball

macrumors regular
Aug 24, 2006
120
0
I wouldn't give it to the Police. It's more likely to be returned to its owner if you contact AT&T directly and ask them to look up the IMEI number. They probably wont be able to tell you any of the account holders details however they may ask you to hand it into one of their stores so they can forward it in or contact the owner themselves.
 

John T

macrumors 68020
Mar 18, 2006
2,115
6
UK.
if he intended to keep it for himself why would he post on a forum that he found an iphone and pretend to strangers, that otherwise wouldn't have a clue about the situation, that he wants to return it?
Then why bother to charge it and then restore it? :rolleyes: If serious in returning it, surely either hand it in where it was found (the logical place where people look if they've lost something) or, as I said, take it to the police.
 

jayenh

macrumors 6502a
Nov 13, 2008
507
14
Then why bother to charge it and then restore it? :rolleyes: If serious in returning it, surely either hand it in where it was found (the logical place where people look if they've lost something) or, as I said, take it to the police.
because, as he stated, he read that was what he needed to do to get past the lockscreen. we don't know how computer literate this guy is. seriously, i don't get why everyone jumps on the case of someone who asks for help returning a lost phone. if he wanted to keep it he would surely just keep it rather than wasting his time coming on to a forum, announcing to a bunch of strangers on the internet that he found it, and then pretend he wants help return it. if he was that way inclined i think he would have restored it, put his sim in it, and got on with his life... don't you?

OP, take it in to an ATT store, have them contact the person tied to the sim card. surely they can get him to collect it from the store.
 

Givmeabrek

macrumors 68040
Apr 20, 2009
3,378
1,046
NY
You wiped out someone else's phone!!!! You were trying to help him. WTF!! :eek:

Take it to an AT&T store. They can find the owner......
 

joebobthehob

macrumors member
Jan 27, 2010
72
0
Odds of person getting their phone back now is pretty low. If you call AT&T, all they can tell you to do is take it to a store. Once you take to the store though, you're just operating on pure luck as far as what will happen next. If you talk to someone decent then maybe they'll actually contact the owner to see if they'll come in and pick up the phone. But it's just as likely that you'll get someone who will smile and be sympathetic, then once you're out the door pocket the phone to sell on Ebay.
 

GeekGirl*

macrumors 65816
Feb 26, 2009
1,215
0
Buffalo, NY
Call ATT give them the info on the phone, give them your info and ask that the owner call you to get his phone, this worked for me:)
 

rmead001

macrumors member
Jul 12, 2009
43
0
I agree with the fact people need to stop jumping down the OP throat for trying to do the right thing. If the SIM was not disabled they would have been able to find out the phone number and whatnot.

Seriously, how many of you don't have your phone backed up? Even if it is not the most recent of backups, would you rather be out your iPhone or maybe 2 weeks worth of backup data. People try and do the right thing any way they can and you criticize them for it. Apparently there is no winning for the OP. Way to go..
 

bstpierre

macrumors 6502a
Mar 28, 2008
534
153
One possibility is to send a note to Arn and see if the guy is a member of MacRumors since you have his name.
 

acfusion29

macrumors 68040
Nov 8, 2007
3,125
1
Toronto
Take it to the police. That is unless you intend keeping it for yourself! :rolleyes:
I think bringing it to the police is the worst possible idea ever.

I have nothing against the police, but handing them over a phone is useless. They won't go out of their way to find out who it belongs to, instead they'll wait for someone to report a phone missing. And since phones go missing many times per day, this is useless...

But to the OP.. why did you restore? If you have his full name, try to contact him on FB? If you don't have FB, PM me and I'll try to find him for you.

Was it a 3GS?
 

tritonj

macrumors 6502a
Jun 12, 2008
704
0
because, as he stated, he read that was what he needed to do to get past the lockscreen. we don't know how computer literate this guy is. seriously, i don't get why everyone jumps on the case of someone who asks for help returning a lost phone. if he wanted to keep it he would surely just keep it rather than wasting his time coming on to a forum, announcing to a bunch of strangers on the internet that he found it, and then pretend he wants help return it. if he was that way inclined i think he would have restored it, put his sim in it, and got on with his life... don't you?

OP, take it in to an ATT store, have them contact the person tied to the sim card. surely they can get him to collect it from the store.
this has nothing to do with being computer literate, if you find a lost item and want to return it most will either drop it off at the place he found it, so if it is at a store he'd drop it off at the front desk, if he isn't' comfortable with that and feels the employees may just take it for their own then the person would probably go to the police. if someone loses something, i'm sure the first place they check is where they had been that day, and the second would be either the police or a security office, if they had lost it at a mall or some other place with security. trying to find the owner yourself is probably the worst way to get an item back to someone, and in some cases can get you arrested as there have been sting operations where items were left for people to find, and if they weren't taken immediately to an authority, the police on the sting operation arrested the guy who recovered the item for stealing it

i won't pretend to know what this guys intentions were, but what he did was pretty dumb, and the whole story is very fishy to me
 

jtara

macrumors 68000
Mar 23, 2009
1,826
432
Yow! Holding Home and Power for 25 seconds does a factory reset? But holding them for, say, 10 seconds does a reboot. Wonder how often somebody tries to reboot and winds-up wiping the thing? (I hope there's some confirmation required...)
 

jayenh

macrumors 6502a
Nov 13, 2008
507
14
this has nothing to do with being computer literate, if you find a lost item and want to return it most will either drop it off at the place he found it, so if it is at a store he'd drop it off at the front desk, if he isn't' comfortable with that and feels the employees may just take it for their own then the person would probably go to the police. if someone loses something, i'm sure the first place they check is where they had been that day, and the second would be either the police or a security office, if they had lost it at a mall or some other place with security. trying to find the owner yourself is probably the worst way to get an item back to someone, and in some cases can get you arrested as there have been sting operations where items were left for people to find, and if they weren't taken immediately to an authority, the police on the sting operation arrested the guy who recovered the item for stealing it

i won't pretend to know what this guys intentions were, but what he did was pretty dumb, and the whole story is very fishy to me

With a regular phone you unlock the keypad and look for names, preferably "home". For all we know this guy hoped this would get him past the lock screen and to some numbers stored on the sim (believe it or not not everyone knows everything about the iPhone and how it works, like he said, he read he should do this).

I still don't see what's "fishy". He didn't state where he found it so we can't assume he can just take it to the security office. Maybe he found it on the park? Who knows unless he replies again. Either way, why would he create this post if he didn't genuinely want to return it?
 

Night Spring

macrumors G5
Jul 17, 2008
13,064
5,084
Yow! Holding Home and Power for 25 seconds does a factory reset? But holding them for, say, 10 seconds does a reboot. Wonder how often somebody tries to reboot and winds-up wiping the thing? (I hope there's some confirmation required...)
Pushing buttons doesn't reset the phone -- it just puts the phone into Recovery or DFU mode, depending on the combination pushed. Then once the phone is in Recovery or DFU, you have to connect it to a computer running iTunes, and push the "restore" button, and click "ok" to confirm you really want to restore the phone. So no, you can't accidentally reset the phone just by pushing buttons.
 

alphaod

macrumors Core
Feb 9, 2008
22,047
1,104
NYC
Thanks for wanting to help someone, but I think you've already done your best to return the phone; if charging it and leaving it on for a few days won't get a call or anything, you can pretty much assume the owner has given up and it's for yours to keep.

Many folk may say take it to an AT&T store or your local law enforcement. Former they can't help as they are forbidden by law to divulge that information without a court order (which you won't get). For the latter, most law enforcement have too much to do then waste time returning a cell phone.

Seeing that you already wiped the phone, just keep it. ;)