Millions of phones are stolen every year, and there’s a hazard yours could be 1 of them. Just it doesn’t accept to exist—you tin make your phone theftproof! Nosotros’ll bear witness you lot how, and what y’all should exercise if your phone is stolen.
Enable Remote Tracking
Remote tracking (called “Observe My Device” on Android and “Discover My iPhone” on iOS) gives you the power to rails a phone’s location and remotely wipe its data. This ways you can find your phone if information technology’s missing or wipe its data if it’south stolen.
If y’all’re using an Android phone, go to “Settings,” open up the Google option, scroll downward to “Security,” and enable “Find My Device.” You can then track your phone or wipe its data from the Find Your Telephone webpage.
If you’re using an iPhone, get to “Settings,” tap your Apple ID (your name), open the “iCloud settings,” and enable “Find My iPhone.” Now, you can track or wipe your phone from the iCloud website.
Utilise a Stiff Password
A complicated lock screen password can be a pain in the cervix, simply it’south the all-time way to prevent thieves from digging effectually your phone. Try to set a potent password on all your devices. Ideally, a password should incorporate capital letters, numbers, and symbols. (You tin use the How Secure Is My Countersign tool to ensure yous’re using an uncrackable password.)
If you don’t want to type a complicated countersign every time you use your telephone, enable biometric authentication. Face ID, and iris or fingerprint scanning are keen, secure options.
Brand Notifications Individual
If you’re concerned about thieves reading text letters and notifications on your lock screen, you lot can hide the contents of those notifications on the lock screen.
On an Android device, go to “Settings,” open up “Sound and Notifications,” notice the “When Device Is Locked” option, and so fix it to “Hibernate Sensitive Notification Content.” If you press “Don’t Show Notifications At All,” you won’t come across notifications even when your telephone is unlocked (not necessarily a bad thing).
On an iPhone, go to “Settings,” open up the “Notifications” card, and tap the “Testify Previews” option. From hither, you lot tin hide notification previews on the lock screen or get rid of them altogether.
If you take an iPhone with Face up ID, it hides notifications from your lock screen until y’all unlock your phone by default. This prevents a thief from seeing notifications with security codes without unlocking your phone.
Enable Deject Syncing
If you lot care near the data on your phone, yous should enable cloud syncing. Trust united states—remotely wiping your phone feels a lot less scary when you know all your photos and contacts are backed upward on the cloud.
For Android phones, go to “Settings,” “Accounts And Backup,” and enable “Dorsum Upwardly My Data.” This backs up your contacts, login info, and settings. Then, download an app like Dropbox, Google Drive, Google Photos, or Amazon Photos to back up your documents, pictures, and videos. Phone settings and contacts automatically sync to a new phone. Y’all tin admission your photos and videos from your chosen cloud solution.
For iPhones, become to “Settings,” tap your Apple ID (your proper name), open the “iCloud settings,” open “iCloud Backup,” and enable “iCloud Fill-in.” When you get a new iPhone, the setup procedure asks if yous desire to restore settings, contacts, photos, and videos from iCloud.
Consider Carrier Insurance
Dissimilar most extended warranties, carrier insurance is usually worth a few hundred bucks. Carrier insurance covers accidents, broken screens, dead batteries, and, of form, lost or stolen phones. However, you lot commonly have to pay a deductible or finish paying off your original phone to get a replacement.
If you desire carrier insurance (information technology isn’t a necessity, it’s simply dainty if yous lose or pause a phone), contact your telephone carrier. Or, continue the Verizon, Sprint, or AT&T websites. If y’all own an iPhone, consider signing upwardly for AppleCare+ (which at present covers stolen iPhones).
What to Do If Your Phone Is Lost or Stolen
Now that your phone has a secure password, is synced to the deject, and is accessible via remote tracking, you don’t have to worryas well
much if it’s stolen.
Still, here are some additional steps you tin can have to preclude a thief from accessing your private files, contacts, photos, and accounts:
- Track your phone: Go to the Find My Phone or iCloud webpage to locate your phone. If it’due south nearby or in a local business, come across if you can notice information technology.
- If it’s stolen, wipe it: There’s no point battling a gang of baddies just to retrieve your phone. If you suspect it’south been stolen, wipe the information.
- Tell your carrier it’s stolen: After you wipe your phone, contact your carrier to report information technology stolen. Yous can either await up your carrier’due south phone number or report it online at My Verizon or My Dart (you have to call AT&T—sorry!). This way, your SIM carte is locked and tin can’t exist used on some other device. Plus, you can greenbacks in any carrier insurance you take.
- Check your accounts: Even if yous take two-factor authentication enabled, it’s a good idea to cheque that nobody’due south accessed your accounts. You might also want to change your passwords (especially for bank and e-mail accounts) simply in case.
Phone call the cops (maybe
): If you lot’re 100% sure your phone was stolen (as in, you watched it happen), go ahead and study information technology to the police force. In that location’s a big black market for stolen phones, and the thief might frequent the surface area with an intent to steal phones. Just know you probably won’t get your phone back, even if the thief is caught.
If yous’re lucky, you’ll never feel losing a phone, just there’s a chance you will. While the above steps might seem a bit time-consuming, they actually aren’t too much of a hassle. And they’re well worth protecting your privacy and security.