Few situations generate as much anxiety as arriving home and discovering that we have left our mobile somewhere.
Or that it has been inadvertently stolen from us, which is an even worse scenario.
According to the Secretary of State for Security, last year there were 279,319 complaints of mobile theft, a figure that is equivalent to one theft every two minutes.
According to these data, mobile phone thefts increased by 19% in the period.
The first impulse of those who live this experience may be to mentally remember the places visited and retrace the path traveled in the hope of finding it.
This can be useful for keys or an umbrella, but for a high-value item, we're less likely to locate the device this way.
What to do then to recover it?
Shake the iPhone and other tricks to undo almost everything on the mobile and on the computer
A call or trying to locate the mobile using software
The first thing to remember is that, in the event of loss or theft, especially in this second case, time is money and you have to act quickly. It is very possible that the mobile has fallen out of our pocket or we have left it on the table in a cafeteria or in the sink of a bathroom. If this is the case, the fastest way is to call our number from another mobile and send a text message indicating the coordinates of the owner. It is very likely that the device is in the hands of someone who found it and does not know how to return it.
If no one answers, we should try to locate the device without further delay from the platform itself.
Both Android and iPhone have built-in location systems, so you just have to search for them from another device or through the web (having accessed from your Google or iCloud account, respectively).
Activate experimental features on your Samsung Android device.Unsplash / Google
Locating an Android
An Android mobile can be located using another device with which it shares a Google account through the Google Find My Device application, or from the web browser itself simply by searching Google for "find my phone".
"You only have to log in with the same Google account that you have associated with the phone," explains David Freire, from the Andro4all blog, "and thus you will be able to see the location in real time of the same or the last location registered if the mobile is turned off and also make it ring, block it or erase all the content of the mobile”.
The latter is especially interesting in the event of theft, as it prevents thieves from accessing private information or using the device to enter current accounts or other sites with sensitive content.
Locating an iPhone
On Apple's mobile platform, the recovery options are basically the same as on Android: locate the iPhone from another device in the ecosystem with which it shares an iCloud account and the Find My iPhone app, or do it from the web.
With both solutions, not only will the exact location of the device be known, but it will also be possible to emit a powerful sound or erase it and disable it remotely.
"If we suspect that we have been victims of a theft, the most convenient thing is to remotely lock the iPhone," says Pedro Aznar, director of the Applesfera blog.
In this sense, Apple has listed a sequence of actions to be taken immediately in case of theft or loss.
A forgotten mobile on a bus mikroman6 (Getty Images)
How to anticipate the loss or theft of the mobile: measures to adopt
The best protection measure against a possible theft or loss of the mobile is to prevent it from happening and protect the device. In this sense, from the National Police they remember that "it is essential that we have the screen lock activated so that no one can access the content easily". If this blocking system uses biometric methods (by fingerprint or face), as is the case in many of the latest generation mobiles, the level of protection will be higher.
The second thing that should be done as a precautionary measure is to write down the IMEI, the unequivocal
of each terminal. Why is it important to keep this number safe? Because it will serve us a posteriori to carry out complaints or possible insurance claims. To find out the phone's IMEI, simply type in the sequence *
; In the case of not having written it down, the operator can help us locate this code, although for security reasons, it will be a complicated process.
Although the function is not designed for this, the emergency data can be useful for the police to locate the owner of a mobile that has been handed over to the authorities by a citizen.
This data is displayed on the screen even if it is locked with the intention of being useful to emergency teams in the event of an accident or fainting, and the data of the owner and their emergency contacts are displayed.
This information can be used by the authorities to return a located mobile.
How is this data entered?
On Android, it must be activated in Settings/Phone information/Emergency information;
on iPhone, the Health/Medical Data/Emergency Contacts app must be opened.
In case of theft, report
If the loss of the mobile is due to robbery or theft, it must be reported as soon as possible. From the National Police they emphasize that "it is important to inform the telephone company and go to the police station as soon as possible to report the incident." Warning the operator of the theft is decisive, not so much because expenses may eventually be incurred for calls on the phone, but because the device can be a key to access the current account and even make transfers using two-step verification. The sooner the line is blocked, the better.
The police also recommend filing a complaint at the police station “providing the IMEI number of the device, which identifies it in a way and whose digits will allow the device to be linked with the complaint, so that, if it is located, we can contact the owner ”. The complaint will also serve for possible insurance claims, if our policy covers theft.
The issue of privacy is also shared by cybersecurity experts: “The biggest problem of loss and theft is privacy, all our contacts, our photos and our social networks will be exposed, not to mention that we can even leave the door open to the data and networks of our company”, warns Jorge Pages, from WathGuard-Cytomic. For this expert, it is very important to "install a program that allows deletion or location on the device." Pages highlights another factor to consider: data loss if the device is not recovered. "It is essential to make backup copies," he explains, "because the feeling of frustration and concern that is generated when someone loses or steals their devices is enormous."
You can follow EL PAÍS TECNOLOGÍA on
or sign up here to receive our