Way back the year 2007, tracking of lost or stolen #smartphones was deemed next to impossible due to the absence of anti-theft tools. And it was also during these years when #iPhones were among the top in the list of lost or stolen devices. Responding to such losses and/or crime, mobile companies strike back by introducing remote tools, specifically designed to locate, and if necessary, erase everything in the lost device. These tools are referred to as the anti-theft software but the availability of these tools does not waive the possibility of your device to get missing or stolen.
In this post, we highlight some helpful tips for you to know exactly what to do in the event your iPhone (in this case, the iPhone 6s) device is missing or snatched. This way we can help you keep your data secure even if it’s in the wrong hands, so as to increase the chances of recovering it sooner.
Before your iPhone 6s is Lost or Stolen
The common connotation saying, “always prepare for the worst” also applies when you own fancy devices like Apple’s iPhone 6s smartphone. This means you have to configure certain features ahead of time. For your iPhone 6s handset, here’s one of the first things you need to work on and utilize as your anti-theft measure.
Activate Find My iPhone on your device.
Find My iPhone is Apple’s patented anti-theft application downloadable through iTunes for free. This tool features an Activation Lock system designed to prevent unauthorized access to your iPhone 6s, if it’s ever stolen or misplaced. Activation Lock system is automatically activated when Find My iPhone is enabled on your iPhone 6s as well as on other devices using iOS 7 or later version.
Once this feature is activated, your Apple ID and password will be required before anyone can disable Find My iPhone on your device, erase your device, or reactivate and use your device. That said, you should keep Find My iPhone enabled on your device, and remember your Apple ID and password as well.
How does Find My iPhone Activation Lock work?
This feature works by securely storing your registered Apple ID on Apple’s activation servers and linked to your device. By then, the system will require the correct password for the registered Apple ID account before anyone can disable Find My iPhone on your device. So if you haven’t yet activated Find My iPhone on your new Apple device, then do it now. The following steps will help you through it.
How to enable Find My iPhone on your iPhone 6s
Find My iPhone allows you to locate your device and take additional actions that can help keep your data safe and recover it fast, if ever it’s lost or stolen. To view all your devices in Find My iPhone, use the same Apple ID by the time you set up each device.
Follow these steps to set up Find My iPhone on your iPhone 6s:
- Tap Settings from the Home screen.
- From the Settings menu, scroll to and tap iCloud.
If prompted to sign in, enter your Apple ID. In case you don’t have one, tap Create and follow the onscreen instructions to create and set up a new Apple ID on your device.
- Tap Find My iPhone to enable the feature (if necessary). Just toggle the switch next to Find My iPhone to turn the feature on or off. Again, it must be turned on.
- Next, tap Send Last Location to enable the feature.
When Send Last Location is turned on, your device location (should it ever be lost or stolen) is sent to Apple server automatically, especially if the battery charge level on your device becomes critically low. This way you will know the last location of your device with Find My iPhone, before it ran out of charge.
Find My iPhone Family Sharing
You can also use Find My iPhone to trace and locate your family members’ iOS devices running iOS 8 or later versions, as well as Mac computers with OS x10.10 or later platform. This is made possible using the Family Sharing feature of Find My iPhone. With this feature enabled, finding any member of your family is made a lot easier.
As requisite to use this feature, each family member needs to set up their devices and computers to share their locations with other family members. Here’s how to enable this feature on supported iOS devices, including your iPhone 6s:
- Navigate to your phone Settings.
- Tap iCloud.
- Tap Share My Location to turn the feature on.
With Family Sharing enabled on your iPhone, any family member who joins the group can help locate yours or another member’s missing device by signing in to iCloud with their Apple ID. Any device associated with that Family Sharing account can be traced.
The maximum number of family members who can be included in and utilize Family Sharing is six. One family member will serve as the family organizer, who invites up to five more family members to join the family group. Once the family members join, Family Sharing features will automatically be set up on every member’s devices.
Aside from location sharing services, this tool can also be used to share each family member’s iTunes, iBooks, and App Store purchases without the need to share accounts. This means you can pay for your family purchases with the same credit card and/or approve kids’ expenditures right from your iPhone or other iOS device.
Find My iPhone Activation Lock
Another service you can use with Find My iPhone enabled on your iPhone 6s is the Activation Lock. The service is automatically activated by the time you turned on Find My iPhone on your device. But just in case you need further assistance on how to get this feature work on your iPhone, follow these steps:
- Navigate to your iPhone Settings menu. (From the Home screen, tap Settings).
- Tap iCloud.
- If necessary, sign in with your Apple ID and password.
- Tap to enable Find My iPhone.
With Activation Lock enabled on your device, no one can configure your device settings without entering the correct Apple ID and password.
After your iPhone 6s is Lost or Stolen
Once you realized your iPhone is missing or may have been stolen, you can immediately put it into Lost Mode using Find My iPhone.
Lost Mode works by locking your device screen with a four-digit passcode and allows you to display a custom message using your phone number to help you recover it. Or if you think it’s necessary, you too can erase your device remotely. Your custom message will continue to show even after your device is wiped. This will make it even harder for other people to use or sell your missing device, as no one can reactivate it without your password.
Here are the things you should do after you misplaced or lost your iPhone:
- Download/install Find My iPhone app on another iOS device (iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch) you have.
- To start finding your device, open Find My iPhone, and select your missing device from the list. Once selected, its location will be displayed on a map. If the device is just nearby, then you can have it play a sound so you can easily find it.
- Turn on Lost Mode.
With Lost Mode, you can lock your missing device remotely using a four-digit passcode and display a custom message using your phone number on it. Payment services through Apple Pay, like when you added credit or debit cards to Apple Pay on your lost device are suspended when you put it on Lost Mode.
- Report your lost or stolen device to local law enforcement.
You might be asked to provide the serial number of your device in this case. Typically, the serial number of an Apple device can be found on the original box or receipt. Otherwise, you can also visit Apple Support website and then navigate to My Support Profile page, if you have registered your missing device with your Apple ID.
- Erase your iPhone.
One way to prevent unauthorized access to your missing device is by erasing it remotely. The process will delete all your information from the device, including credit or debit cards. But the downside is, you won’t be able to track or find your missing device using Find My iPhone, after you erase it. Activation Lock will also be turned off after you erase your device, thus allowing other people to activate and use it. That being said, you should go for this option only if you really couldn’t find your device or there’s no hope of recovering it through any other means available.
- Contact your Service Provider/Carrier.
You may also contact your service provider or network carrier to report your lost or stolen iPhone. You can request them to deactivate your SIM or account using their tools from their end. However, if you go for this option, you won’t able to locate your device, play a sound, send a message, issue a lock request, or erase your iOS device via Find My iPhone.
Key Things to Remember when using Find My iPhone
Be sure to turn off or disable Find My iPhone on your device, before handing it over to someone else. Otherwise, they won’t be able to activate and use your device normally.
You also need to disable Find My iPhone before you have your device serviced to allow technicians perform necessary repair actions.
In case you forget your Apple ID password, please contact Apple Support for further assistance on your Apple ID password reset.
- Turn off Find My iPhone.
- Remove your device from your iCloud account.
Erase your iPhone (if necessary). Here’s how:
- Navigate to your iPhone Settings
- Tap General.
- Tap Reset.
- Tap Erase All Content and Settings.
Different Ways to erase your iPhone
You can erase or wipe your iPhone data in three different methods. Simply pick which method suits you best.
- If you have synced it with iTunes, you can erase it using iTunes.
- If you’re signed in to iCloud and Find My iPhone is activated, you can use iCloud.
- If you don’t use iCloud or can’t sync/connect to iTunes, then you can erase your device using Recovery Mode.
The third option however is not applicable for remote purposes (or if you want to remotely erase your iPhone) as it requires physical connection between your iPhone and a computer. This means you need to connect your iPhone to a computer and open iTunes on it to complete the process.
Connect with us
We are always willing to help fix your problems with your Apple device. Browse through our existing troubleshooting posts or you may contact us directly by completing this form and hitting the Submit button. Make sure you provide all the necessary information about your phone and the problem so that it would be easier for us to help you.