Posted on May 12, 2020

When Your Phone Is Lost or Stolen

Every day, people lose their cell phones, become victims of thieves, or simply misplace them. Fortunately, just about every smartphone, free cellphone, and other types of phones come with built-in location-tracking capabilities. That way, you can take various steps to find your missing cell phone. The next time you wonder how to find your lost phone, you’ll have a simple, foolproof procedure to follow to retrieve it or at least rescue its data.

Methods for Finding Your Lost Cell Phone

Not all cell phones and smartphones are the same. However, most cell phones have tracking apps and alerts so you can “sound the alarm” when you misplace the device or when it’s stolen. Cell-phone owners can do the following when faced with a missing phone:

  • Sent a text to your phone: You can set your phone to display incoming texts on the main screen. That way, if someone sees it on a bus, train, or airplane seat, they might notice your message and follow your instructions to call you back.
  • Call the phone: Sometimes, even a person who stole it will answer and realize that you have tracking. They might cooperate with you and leave the phone where they found it. If it’s lost, you will hear it ring or possibly vibrate.
  • Use the “find-my-phone” app: If you’ve set the app to track your phone, you can use any other phone or PC to locate your missing or stolen device.
  • Protect the data: To be safe, use a remote app to backup all your data and then wipe the phone’s memory clean. That way, thieves won’t be able to get your sensitive information.
  • Lock the phone: Many apps exist so that you can remotely lock your phone and then change all passwords.
  • Call your carrier: Your phone carrier will be able to help you use other, more sophisticated methods to locate your phone and protect its data.
  • File a police report: If the phone was stolen, you’ll need a police report to prove to credit card companies that you did not make any unauthorized charges.

Getting Peace of Mind

If you take precautions before your phone is lost or stolen i.e., write down the steps to take to find or protect your missing phone, you’ll have peace of mind. There’s no need to panic when you are trying to remember how to find your lost phone or what to do to protect sensitive data. Even if you own a free cellphone, there are built-in apps that will help you locate the device. Plus, you can always download free apps from the Internet that add to your ability to track and protect a missing phone.