Was your iPhone lost or stolen? Here’s what to do

iPhones are lost and stolen every day, but luckily Apple has powerful tools built into iOS that will keep your data safe and your device unusable if it’s misplaced or stolen by a thief.

With Find My, you can locate, disable, and even erase lost devices, but unless you’re in a situation where you need these services, you might not know exactly how they work, what they do, or what information anyone can access when they own your device.

Where if you lose your iPhone — or if it’s stolen by some corrupt thief — the panic that ensues makes it hard to know what to do next. Where should you start your search? Do you need to alert the police? How can you use your IMEI number to block your iPhone?

Don’t worry: we’ll explain everything you need to know about reporting a stolen iPhone and how to get it back. We will also show you how to lock a lost iPhone so that no one else can use it.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Without further ado, here’s what to do when the unthinkable happens.

How to locate your lost phone

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

The first step you need to take when you lose your iPhone is to search for it. This may include: Searching the house or tracking it on a map. If you think someone has stolen your iPhone, it may be helpful to know where it is, but you shouldn’t try to recover it yourself.

Here are all the ways that will enable you to track and locate a lost iPhone.

Try to contact him

Most of the time, the iPhone gets lost around the house. It might be behind the sofa, locked in the car, or buried under a pile of laundry. After doing a thorough search inside your home or office, calling iPhone will be the next option.

While ringing, try to soften the sound of your footsteps, keeping in mind the ringing tone. If your iPhone is in vibrate mode, you may hear the vibrating sound on the ground somewhere.

Don’t worry if your iPhone is on silent mode; You can still make it make some sounds using the Find My app.

Use the Find My app from Apple

Apple’s Find My app makes it easy to track an iPhone on a map, provided it has cellular data or is connected to Wi-Fi. This doesn’t work if the Find My iPhone option is turned off in your settings, but since the option is turned on by default when you sign in to iCloud, you should be fine.

Open the Find My app on a different Apple device or head to and sign in with your Apple ID, then click the button Finding iPhone. To use the Find My app on someone else’s Apple device, go to the tab Me and click Option Help a friend (help a friend).

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

After you sign in, Find shows where all your connected Apple devices are. Locate your lost iPhone to get directions to its location. If your iPhone isn’t connected to the internet, have the Find app alert you when it’s found instead.

If you think someone stole your iPhone, for your safety, You shouldn’t try to recover it yourself.

Play audio from your lost phone

The Find My app only provides an approximate location on the map. This means that you may still struggle to find your lost iPhone, even if you know it is somewhere in the house. Fortunately, you can use the . option Play Sound In the Find My app or on iCloud to make your iPhone play the ringtone.

This works even if your iPhone is in silent mode with the volume completely reduced.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Enable Mark as Lost to lock iPhone

In the Find My app or iCloud, you can choose to turn on mode Mark as missing for a lost iPhone. When you do that, it locks your iPhone – giving you the option to create a passcode if you haven’t already used it – and lets you type a message on the screen for whoever finds your lost device.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

To protect your data, you must turn on Mark as missing on your iPhone to lock it whether or not you think someone stole it. Doing so makes it difficult for anyone to resell your iPhone and makes it impossible for them to access sensitive services like Apple Pay.

You may notice another option to erase your lost iPhone. Don’t use it yet.

Use Google Timeline to track your lost device

It’s a well-known fact that Google tracks our every move. While privacy advocates bemoan this invasion of privacy, this option could be a lifesaver if you lose your iPhone. As it turns out, you can track your device using Google Timeline instead of the Find My app or iCloud.

Sign in to your Google Account on the Google Timeline website. You should be able to see all the last places Google spotted your iPhone.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Like Find My, this only works if you have Google Maps already installed on your iPhone and you have enabled Register places in the account settings. Google turns this option on by default, so it’s only turned off if you choose to disable it.

Again, if you think someone stole your iPhone, don’t try to recover it yourself.

Ask the people around you and in the places near you

It is often helpful to ask your friends and family on social media to help you find your lost iPhone. You likely left your iPhone at a friend’s house the last time you visited. All you have to do is ask him to find him.

Likewise, take a look at the boxes of lost and found devices in any public places you’ve visited recently. Your options include cafes, theaters, gyms, and more. You can even call the public transportation company if you have recently used a bus or train.

It’s also worth asking the police if anyone has handed over a lost iPhone. You may need to find the iPhone IMEI number before doing this to prove that you are the owner of the iPhone. You can find this number on the original box or on your purchase receipt.

How to recover a stolen iPhone

Worrying about locating your iPhone is the first, but it’s another matter entirely to get it back. Of course, if you lost your iPhone at home or left it in the office, it’s okay to go and retrieve it yourself.

But if you think that someone stole your iPhone, you should be more careful.

Report your stolen iPhone to the police

Despite the fact that Find My app gives you instructions, do not try to recover a stolen iPhone on your own. There have been reports of people being attacked, shot, or even killed when trying to do so themselves.

And while some people have succeeded in recovering their stolen goods through direct confrontation, only a minority will be so lucky. Instead, you should report your stolen iPhone to the police.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Give them as much supporting documentation as possible. This includes your IMEI number — which you can find on the original box or purchase receipt — to prove that the iPhone belongs to you. You should also provide the iPhone’s last known address, if you are able to track it.

Unfortunately, you may find that the police treat this as a low priority issue, depending on the crime rate in your area. Even if that’s the case, you can use the official police report as part of your insurance claim to get a replacement device.

Report your stolen iPhone to your insurance company

If you insured your iPhone against loss or theft, it’s time to talk to your insurance company about claiming a replacement device. Make sure you provide them with as much information as possible, including a copy of the police report and a list of all the steps you tried to take to get your iPhone back.

Even if you don’t have hardware insurance, you may be able to claim your iPhone with your home insurance or even with your credit card company.

How to prevent a lost or stolen iPhone from being used

If you can’t get your phone back, there are some precautions you should take to ensure your data stays safe. If you don’t already have one, use the Find My app or the iCloud website to enable Mark as missing And create a secure passcode to lock your iPhone.

You may also want to take additional steps to completely wipe the device or revoke access to certain accounts.

Activation Lock still protects erased iPhone

If you already have a backup of your iPhone and you’re convinced you’ll never get it back, you might want to erase it remotely using the Find My app or the iCloud website. You can’t track your iPhone after it’s erased, so only use this option if you’ve lost hope of getting it back again.

To do this, select your iPhone in the Find My app or on iCloud and use the scan this device.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Thanks to Activation Lock, even if you erase your iPhone, no one can set it up without your Apple ID and password. Thus, there is still a chance that your iPhone will be handed over to the police and returned to you even after it has been erased.

Designed “Activation LockTo keep your device and information safe in the event your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple Watch, or Mac is ever lost or stolen. If you erase your device without signing out of iCloud first, it may still be protected by Activation Lock. Whether you erased your own device or purchased a device from someone else, you can turn off Activation Lock by just entering the correct Apple ID and password.

Change your email and account passwords

In the event someone else manages to unlock your iPhone — perhaps if they discover your passcode — you can still protect most of your data by changing your account passwords.

Make a list of every app and service you use with your iPhone, including:

  • iCloud
  • Email accounts
  • Online Shopping Sites
  • Social Media
  • cloud storage services

Then log into the website for each of these services and create a new password for your account. Also, look for an option in the account settings to sign out of all connected devices.

When you do this, it prevents anyone from logging in without entering the new password. It is especially important to change your email password, as this is where other password reset links are sent to.

Block a SIM in a Lost iPhone

Next, you will contact your carrier to block the SIM card. A thief can use your mobile number in a different device to make phone calls and raise expensive data bills.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

You don’t need your IMEI number to block a stolen iPhone SIM card. But if your carrier requires it, you can find the IMEI number on the original box or on your iPhone purchase receipt.

How to avoid losing your iPhone in the future

Whether you restore your iPhone (which we hope) or replace it with a new one, you’ll likely want to know how to protect yourself from losing it in the future. While it is difficult to avoid losing it again, you can be sure that your data is safe if you do.

The best step to take is to create a six-digit passcode that is difficult for others to guess. Enable this from Settings, you can also turn on Face ID or Touch ID to make it more convenient to unlock iPhone securely.

Also make sure to enable Find My iPhone By going to الإعدادات -> [اسمك] -> Find My. Turn on Send last place to have an increased chance of finding your iPhone when the battery runs out.

Was your iPhone lost or stolen?  Here's what to do - iOS

Finally, consider getting insurance that covers you against loss or theft. This way, you don’t need to pay for a replacement device yourself if you ever lose it.

Don’t forget that even if you think it’s lost forever, a good person might hand your iPhone over to the police. Make sure you know what to do if you find someone else’s lost iPhone so you can return the favor too.

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