What happens if your iPhone gets stolen?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Fedmahn Kassad, Oct 12, 2013.

  1. Fedmahn Kassad macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2013
    New York City
    Hey everyone,

    I'm wondering what exactly my options are if my phone gets stolen. I recently bought an iPhone 5S unlocked, and am a little nervous about what happens if I'm a little careless. I haven't lost a phone in my life, even momentarily, but the past is obviously not an indicator of the future.

    Here's what I have thus far:
    - Activation lock is on
    - Fingerprint feature is on
    - Find My iPhone is on
    - Email/iCloud account access is restricted on the phone

    So how long might I have after losing the phone to locate it? Theoretically, someone just has to restore it in itunes and it's lost, right?

    And how much does activation lock actually help?

    Thanks everybody!
  2. simps100 macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2012
    Since you have Activation Lock enabled they will not be able to restore your phone without your Apple ID and Password so all your data should be secure and the phone not much use to anyone which don't know these details.
  3. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    Write down all the serial, IMEI blah-blah information on your rolodex.

    When at a public places, always face your phone AWAY from the traffic to avoid the grab-and-run.
  4. L T macrumors 6502

    L T

    Feb 24, 2013
    Turn off access to control centre from lock screen, otherwise the thief could stick in airplane mode and make find my iPhone useless
  5. TSX macrumors 68030


    Oct 1, 2008
    Your only option is to find it with find my iPhone which you have turned on already.
  6. pikachu2k7 macrumors regular

    Oct 21, 2012
    North Carolina
    Call Apple and if you wait long enough, you get to here Siri...
  7. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    Sounds like you have taken reasonable precautions. Now, just enjoy your phone.
  8. Shockwave78 macrumors 65816


    Jul 10, 2010
    Apple is top notch on this, but there are a couple flaws that need to be fixed and it would be completely useless to steal a phone then

    1. Remove airplane mode from lock screen control center.

    2. Require passcode or touch ID to turn phone off.

    If they fix this it pretty much will deter anyone from stealing a phone as they can't disable it from being tracked. The only thing they could do is actually soak it in water so it shorts out. The phone may be dead but there plenty of people buying dead phones for $100+

    Apple could also leave the hard reset feature as it is now since thr phone does reboot automatically.
  9. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

    May 1, 2011
    SF Bay Area
    Activation Lock locks every iOS device to an Apple ID and it all happen inside Apple's servers so it doesn't matter what happens to your phone.
    The thief can try to erase it, restore it, DFU it,..... doesn't matter because at some point it's going to have to be activated again and at that point, Apple's servers will match it up to its corresponding Apple ID and require them to input the correct password.
  10. Fedmahn Kassad thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2013
    New York City

    So short of replacing the main board on the phone (or wherever device identifiers are stored), a thief would be able to do nothing with my phone as it is?

    I feel a lot better about all this lol. It seems that stealing iPhones is generally a low-profit business given all the work someone would have to go through to make the device operable.
  11. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    That's not really true... ultimately, anyone with a mylar faraday cage bag, or even a few sheets of aluminum foil, could block the phone from receiving GPS signals or transmitting/receiving data. That would disable it from being tracked.

    Now, this doesn't disable activation lock, so a thief still can't reuse the phone as-is. But, it could still be useful to someone who wants to use the phone to sell as parts, or something along those lines.

    I think Apple's pretty much done all they reasonably can to deter theft without making using the phone onerous for the legitimate owner. You can't stop everything, though.

    OP: You're doing all that you can reasonably do in this case, so you're good. You may want to check and see if your renter's or homeowner's insurance, if you have some, will cover gadget thefts. Many do.
  12. 0970373 Suspended

    Mar 15, 2008
    This is possible? To remove just WiFi? How does one do that?
  13. redlinux macrumors regular


    Sep 25, 2013
    Turn on "Find my iPhone" and you're all set. They will not be able to restore it and, even if they were able to restore it, it would still ask for your Apple ID as soon as it boots up. Pretty nice feature really. :)
  14. Jordan921 macrumors 601


    Jul 7, 2010
    Bay Area
    Activation lock is turned on when find my iPhone is on correct?
  15. Roessnakhan macrumors 68040


    Sep 16, 2007
  16. darricksailo macrumors 601


    Dec 18, 2012
    I think the person was requesting that apple should do this
  17. Jordan921 macrumors 601


    Jul 7, 2010
    Bay Area
  18. fiat macrumors newbie

    Oct 11, 2013
    Since this is security-related topic, would like to hear anyone's thoughts on the "auto-lock" and "erase data" features in 5s.

    I originally set "never" on auto-lock, after reading this thread I changed to "5 min" thinking it's dumb to lose my iphone without being locked or auto locked shortly. Am I on my right mind?

    For "erase data", I can't figure out if it's absolutely necessary after all the protection settings you guys put out here are turned on?

    Appreciate your thoughts.
  19. OneMike macrumors 603


    Oct 19, 2005
    That's a good one. They still can't do much but at least it stops them from disabling data if the phone is on. Then again they can just take the sim out.

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