How to Lock a Stolen Mobileby Diana V. Faustmann
A stolen cell phone or smart phone can cause high anxiety, even panic, because it can lead to serious unauthorized charges and identity theft. Unfortunately, cell phone insurance giant Asurion estimates that 60 million Americans lose their mobile phones each year, many to theft. As a precaution, set a passcode or PIN on your device today and note the device's IMEI number. Also download or subscribe to an anti-theft tracking program. Should your mobile phone get stolen, act quickly with your service provider and your available technology to suspend service, locate the device, block its use and prevent access to stored data.
Work with Your Phone Service Provider
Call your phone service provider immediately to report the loss and suspend service.
If live support is not immediately available, access your account on the service provider’s website to see if you can suspend service yourself online. Follow up with a phone call to your service provider in any event.
Ask whether your carrier can block your phone from being used even with a new SIM card. Provide your phone’s International Mobile Equipment Identifier, or IMEI number, if requested.
Request a written or emailed confirmation from your carrier that your service has been suspended and blocked.
File a police report. Provide the police case number to your service or insurance provider, if requested.
Work with Available Software
Register your phone with online services such as TrackIMEI.com or Stolen-Property.com, to track your phone’s usage or circulation from anywhere in the world. Regularly check your account online for any attempted usage.
Log in to your account at your phone tracking program's website. Follow the instructions and use the tools provided to locate your phone.
Once the phone is located, follow the program’s specific instructions to remotely block your mobile phone and wipe it clean of information. Some programs also enable you to make your phone sound an alarm.
Items you will need
- link Asurion: Wireless Phone Insurance
- link Stolen-Property: Steps to follow for cell phone theft
- link TrackeIMEI: Mobile Tracker
- link USA Today: Lost or stolen smartphone? Find and erase it remotely
- link AT&T: How do I report a lost or stolen phone?
- link Mobile Recovery: Verizon Total Equipment Coverage
- photo_camera Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images