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What to do if your iPhone is lost or stolen

In the event you’ve lost your iPhone, or it has been stolen, take these steps to have a better chance of securing your data and possibly recover your device.

Please note: if you believe your iPhone has been stolen, do not attempt to recover it. Report the theft to your local police.

Track, Lock & Erase your iPhone with Find My iPhone

  1. Go to iCloud.com > Login. Or open the Find My iPhone app on another iOS device.
    1. If you don’t have access to another trusted iOS device, you can still access Find My iPhone without using two-factor authentication.
  2. Open Find My iPhone (you may be asked to enter your password again).
  3. You will see a map approximating where your Apple devices are located. At the top, centre of the screen is a drop-down menu > click to open a list of your devices.
  4. Find My iPhone OptionsSelect the lost or stolen device.
  5. If the device is online, you are able to: (1) make the device play a sound, (2) lockdown the device with Lost Mode and display a message, or (3) completely erase the device.
    If the device is offline, and you previously enabled Send last location, a greyed out dot will show where the iPhone was last located before it went offline.
  6. Click Lost Mode. You may choose to enter a phone number and message for anyone who may find your iPhone. Once you click done, the iPhone will be locked until the pre-existing passcode is entered.
  7. If you believe the iPhone is lost or stolen with no hope of recovery, you may choose to erase the iPhone. Even if it is offline, the iPhone will be erased the next time it connects to the internet (see more below).

Apple Pay is disabled when your iPhone is in Lost Mode.

Find My iPhone Lost Mode

Permanently lock your stolen iPhone

  1. Complete the steps above and choose the Erase option to delete all data from your stolen iPhone.
  2. Your iPhone will be completely wiped of all data.
  3. Despite the iPhone being wiped of all data, it will remain unusable due to Activation Lock. So long as the stolen iPhone is still listed as a device in your Find My iPhone app, it cannot be unlocked and used until your Apple ID and password have been entered or until the iPhone has been removed from your Find My iPhone account.

Apple describes Activation Lock working this way:

When you turn on Find My iPhone on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, your Apple ID is securely stored on Apple’s activation servers and linked to your device. From that point on, your Apple ID password or device passcode is required before anyone can turn off Find My iPhone, erase your device, or reactivate and use your device.

Activation Lock is enabled automatically when you set up Find My iPhone.

Secure Your Apple ID if you did not have Find My iPhone Enabled

If Find My iPhone was not enabled on your device, the priority for securing your Apple data is to update your Apple ID password.

  1. Change your Apple ID password.
    1. If you’ve used the same password on other services, change those passwords too.
  2. Report your device lost or stolen to the police.
  3. Notify your mobile service provider.
Updated on April 18, 2019

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