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Stop Thieves Taking Your iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry or Android Device

From iPads to Smartphones, laptops to iPods, we all love our technology and love to take our tech out and about with us.

If the recent burglary attempt at the Covent Garden iPhone store is anything to go by, it shows just how much in demand modern technology is amongst thieves. Unlike our beloved TVs or home PCs, which are particularly hard to misplace, it’s all too easy to lose or have stolen expensive mobile technology.

But what measures can you take to ensure that you can keep your well loved gadgets safe?
You might want to try out some of these 10 ways to keep your tech safe:

1) Find my iPhone

Find My iPhone is free for anyone with an iPhone 4S, iPad, or 4th generation iPod touch. To activate it all you have to do is sign in with your Apple ID and turn on the app in order for it to start working. You can then keep track of your device by logging in to other Apple devices and running the application. This means that if you own an iPad and an iPhone you can keep tabs on both of them through the same Apple ID and account. You can also access the service for all of your Apple devices at icloud.com. If you didn’t know: the iCloud is Apple’s latest foray into the cloud, which promises to seamlessly integrate with all of your apps, so you can access all of your content on all your devices.

2) Find my Phone BlackBerry

This app offers the same functionality as Apple’s Find my iPhone App, but, obviously, for BlackBerry devices. You can command your phone to ring, vibrate and flash from anywhere via email or SMS, as well as get your phone’s current location. BlackBerry claim to offer Guaranteed Location information when looking for your device, as it offers both Cell Tower location, GPS and assisted GPS service for accurate location pinpointing. Please note that the app does require an SD-Card for use.

3) iPad Lock Security Case

You know when you are in stores such as Comet and you notice that the laptop or iPad you are checking out is chained up so you can’t walk out of the store with it? Well, that’s what an iPad lock is. Like a good bike lock it might not make your iPad impossible to steal, but it could well deter an opportunistic thief.

4) Norton Anti-Theft

This is popular anti-theft software from Norton than can track lost or stolen laptops, PCs, tablets and android smartphones. You can log on online to find the laptop’s location and you can also snap photographs of thieves using your device via the internal webcam. The software is easy to use, but a computer-savvy laptop thief will probably be able to de-activate it quickly if they can access your Admin account.

5) McAfee WaveSecure

This piece of software works in a similar way to Norton’s anti-theft device, but this app is designed for mobile phones. You can track your device via GPS or text message and wipe the phone of all your personal details – even if your phone’s SIM card is changed. A clever feature designed to hood-wink the tech-savvy Smartphone thief is the way that the app hides itself from the full list of installed apps on a device, making it more difficult to detect the fact that the mobile is being tracked.

6) Hidden

This application gained worldwide attention in the media over the summer when it was used by a California resident to find and locate his stolen MacBook. Josh Kaufman used the application to find the person that was using his laptop in Oakland, California. Kaufman published photographs of the man using his device on tumblr until the police finally acted and apprehended the man.

The Hidden app works well and promises to locate a stolen computer ‘anywhere on the planet, collect photos of the thief and screen shots of the computer in use.’ Hidden will take screen shots of your stolen computer in use so you can see what the thief is doing: great for building a case for the prosecution!

7) Wheres My Droid

This great app for Android operated smartphones is a simple, but clever device – perfect if you lose your phone at home! When activated the app allows you to text a certain word to your phone that will then turn up the volume to high and ring, even if it is set to silent. You can also send a word to the phone that then sends you back GPS co-ordinates so you can find the phone.

8) SeekDroid

Another good app for anyone with an Android phone. The SeekDroid operates on Android 2.2 or higher and lets users access a dedicated website in order to help locate a lost or stolen phone. You can find your phone via GPS and lock your phone; you can even wipe the phone and SD card so important personal information is deleted. Great if you use your phone for business, or store important information – such as bank account and pin number details – on your handset!

9) Spykee Spy Robot

This is a fun little digital robot that looks like a toy – so will be ignored by burglars rummaging through your stuff – but is in fact a remote controlled spy-cam. The device makes it easy for anyone to keep an eye on their gadgets within the home when they are away.

You can use it to move around your home via a remote control device accessed via any computer and it also has a built in MP3 Player and also works as a VOIP phone, too, so you can chat directly via the robot to whoever is looking at it.

The device is self-recharging, too: when battery power begins to wane the device actually finds its own power station and automatically docks on it so it can recharge. A great little gadget if you are looking to monitor your home when you are not there.

10) Common Sense

It’s an old app this one, though one not always ‘downloaded’ by fans of new technology keen to show-off their latest gadgets and gizmos in public. One of the easiest ways to avoid having your new HTC Desire, PlayBook or MacBook stolen is to use a little bit of common sense when it comes to keeping your belongings secure. Don’t leave these pieces of expensive technology out on the table in a busy bar; avoid playing with your iPad on an empty bus late at night; and keep your phone in your pocket when walking down a crowded street. Thieves are opportunistic, so don’t give them an opportunity to steal your stuff!


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