May 9, 2013

An iPhone, especially the latest model, makes you a big theft target.

Here are a few things you can do to limit the risk and the damage.

30 comments:

Alex said...

So I guess thieves don't care about Samsung Galaxy S3 or the Sony Experia Z? Those are high-end phones.

Alex said...

The iPhone - a design so iconic even thieves can tell it form 10 feet away.

kentuckyliz said...

I don't use mine in public unless I absolutely have to. No showing off.

I have a case with Bouguereau's L'Innocence on it--designed it myself on Zazzle. Perhaps Mother Mary and the Baby Jesus prick the conscience. You wouldn't steal the Blessed Virgin, would you?

Although it feels sinful to play Kelis' Milkshake on that phone. Unholy.

mccullough said...

Carry a gun isn't one of the options?

kentuckyliz said...

I made a great ringtone too--the opening guitar riffs of Rush Spirit of Radio. Guys dig it. It is total guy bait.

Sigivald said...

Alex: Not quite as much, though I'm sure they're willing to steal them.

But that's not as page-view-generatey... and given the Android fragmentation issue the #1 "target" is always likely to be a given iPhone.

(Also, to point up the above, I didn't even know Sony was making phones. Let alone that one was called the "Experia Z".

At least Samsung has some market penetration in mindshare...)

kentuckyliz said...

I don't think I'll buy another iPhone after this one dies or is stolen.

I'm pissed off at Apple and probably won't by any more of their products.

You can report your item stolen, by serial number, in your Apple online account, and deactivate its link to your account.

But Apple does not prevent that item with that serial number to be activated by someone else.

They are incentivizing the theft of their devices if they keep working.

I want a self-destruct feature that is linked to the altimeter. Meaning, when someone picks it up, it explodes--glass shards into eyeballs.

My purse was stolen last October with an iPhone and an iPad in it and this is why I know this is how things are. I've bitched at Apple about it.

bagoh20 said...

This is why I lick and drool on everything I value.

Ann Althouse said...

"I have a case with Bouguereau's L'Innocence on it--designed it myself on Zazzle. Perhaps Mother Mary and the Baby Jesus prick the conscience. You wouldn't steal the Blessed Virgin, would you?"

I think you're making yourself a soft target.

Not only did Jesus advise us to hand over our possessions to thieves -- even voluntarily give additional things -- but you look mild and feminine with a thing like that.

Ann Althouse said...

"But Apple does not prevent that item with that serial number to be activated by someone else."

Brick it.

(Read the article.)

I don't understand why the cops don't/can't use the GPS to capture the thieves.

Peter said...

I don't doubt that it's true, yet that implies that either the thief is using the phone (not so bright if it's trackable) or someone is buying them.

Does Apple really refuse to brick it? Quickly making the phone unusable would seem to be the best deterrent.

mccullough said...

Kentuckyliz,

You need to get your next I-phone issued by Q branch

Alex said...

Screw you iPhone people, I'm rocking a Nokia.

Libertarian Advocate said...

KentuckyLiz:

You wrote: I want a self-destruct feature that is linked to the altimeter. Meaning, when someone picks it up, it explodes--glass shards into eyeballs.

Ha! Not too many women think like that. You must be a very popular gal among Kenmtucky men.

mark said...

Ann Althouse said...
Brick it.

"Bricking" doesn't brick the phone. It just adds its code to the national database to block from use on cell towers. You can always reflash that with a good code and then use the phone.

Your biggest goal should be to keep your data safe. The phone can be replaced. So make sure to keep it password locked. That at least will keep your data out of their hands.

mark said...

Apple? People still use outdated stuff like that?!

(Siri "Search Karate ... Karate!)
http://youtu.be/Z19vR1GldRI

CEO-MMP said...

mark, that's a great ad. I love the "do not attempt" in tiny letters, and I like the "don't fight. Switch." at the end, harking back to the good old days and Tareyton cigarette ads.

edutcher said...

How 'bout don't buy overpriced junk in the first place?

I know, too logical.

mark said...

Peter said...
Does Apple really refuse to brick it?

You get your IMEI blocked by letting your carrier know your phone was stolen (that is the article's version of "brick"). It wasn't until this year that GSM networks supported this nationally. CDMA (Sprint and Verizon) have had it for years.

In the past someone could steal your ATT iPhone. Pull out your SIM card. Put theirs in and start using the phone as their own. Now they can use it for awhile. On regular intervals their network will sweep for bad IMEI codes. They will see the stolen phone and block the SIM card in the phone from using their tower (and mark it as being used in a stolen phone).

That SIM card IS their account (it is how carriers identify users). So not only can they not use the phone. Their account gets blocked as well.

CEO-MMP said...

edutcher said...

How 'bout don't buy overpriced junk in the first place?

I know, too logical."



There's one in every crowd.

If no one bought stuff there'd be no innovation, no progress. I'm sure you'd be happy hitching up the Conestoga to go to the general store, but I kinda like newfangled things.

mark said...

edutcher said...
How 'bout don't buy overpriced junk in the first place?

Which is why I buy Android tablets and phones. They are awesome! Priced right and not junk. Best of both worlds.

Sigivald said...

Also, all of that stuff is good advice generally, having nothing to do with "iPhone".

Situational awareness helps you not be a victim.

Not leaving expensive stuff just lying around helps keep you from being robbed.

CEO-MMP said...

Which is why I buy Android tablets and phones. They are awesome! Priced right and not junk. Best of both worlds.

fanboi.

edutcher said...

mark said...

How 'bout don't buy overpriced junk in the first place?

Which is why I buy Android tablets and phones. They are awesome! Priced right and not junk. Best of both worlds.


Know what you mean.

A tablet is going to be The Blonde's Christmas present.

bpm4532 said...

Actually Samsung has moved into first place on this list.

sinz52 said...

I use LastPass.

One hard-to-break 16 character password encrypts all my other passwords, and all my sensitive data. The same app lets me manage all those same passwords across all my platforms: Windows, Linux, iPhone, Android.

As for the phone itself, the thieves can have it. It's a Galaxy S2. If that's the only way I can get an upgrade, then so be it.

As the article points out, the best way to avoid having your phone be stolen is to have an older model phone that's no longer in high demand.

Same thing with cars. If you're worried about having your car stolen, buy a used Chevy Aveo. No one is going to steal that car, even if you left the door open, left the keys in the ignition, and wrote "STEAL ME" on the windshield.

MadisonMan said...

Brick it

If you glue your iPhone to a brick, doesn't that make it pretty non-portable?

mark said...

CEO-MMP said...
fanboi.

iSheep! :)

What I really like about Android is that it has created a new hobby market for cheap ARM computers. You can get an Android mini-computer to plug into your TV for under $50 now.

And a good tablet will only run you about $100 now. A great one for $200. At that those prices and several form factors (thumb-drive, small box, tablet, phone) people are hacking them in lots of weird ways. Stuffing them in dashes of cars, running your home automation, satellites, micro-servers, internet tvs, etc.

Shanna said...

I knew there was a reason not to be an early adopter!

sonicfrog said...

I have a Windows phone... The "Osborned" Lumia 900.... They can't give them away.... I feel pretty safe! :-)