Thursday, 6 February 2014

stolen phone in SA


If you get a smartphone, e.g. an iPhone, stolen in SA, this is what you have to do:

Day 1.

1. Login to Find my phone on apple's website and find the phone. Tell it to "remote erase".

If you didn't enable the self-destruct feature or the find-my-iphone app, you will remember to do so with your next one.

2. In the meantime, change your login password on the apple app store:

If you don't do this, they can buy apps in your name with your credit card details. They can also change your password and lock you out.

3. Find the box of your phone at home and phone your service provider (Cellular) and tell them the IMEI number and serial number of the stolen or lost phone. Ask them to block the SIM card and the phone serial number. They will ask you for a police case number. You have to call them back. If you don't do this, you will be paying someone else's phone bill. By doing this you stop them from using the phone. 

4. Go to Twitter, Facebook, Google, and any other subscription-based sites you signed up for, and change your password immediately. Look in your iTunes on your PC/Mac and see what apps you had installed. Go to the web sites of all those apps and change your password(s). Otherwise your facebook account, for example, might start sending requests for financial assistance to your entire friend list - and you won't be able to log in and stop it. Importantly, login to services like Dropbox and others that store/memorise which device is linked to your account, and remove the device that was stolen. (All cloud services do this).  

5. Go to iTunes > Store > View Account > Account Information > Deauthorise All ; Manage Devices > and remove the offending device.

6. Go to the police and get your case number, and phone it through to your insurance company.

7. Phone your bank and ask them to change your banking PIN and disable internet banking access for that phone. 

8. Make voodoo doll of suspected thief and stab repeatedly with a pin.*  


Day 2. 

9. Wait for insurance company to contact you. They will order a new phone from a supplier. You will have to go to the supplier to collect it, most likely.

10. Take the new phone to your service provider (cellular). Any one of their stores will do. Take your utility bill and your ID, as they will need to "RICA" you again. Ask for a "SIM Swap". Tell them your old IMEI/SIM number and ask them to move your previous phone number to a new SIM. They will charge you R 20 or so for this apart from the cost of the new SIM.

The reason you do step 10 after step 9 is that your new phone might take a different size of SIM card, so you need to know which phone they're giving you. In my case, I had an iPhone 4 and was moved to a 4S, so I had to get a micro SIM.

11. Insert SIM in new phone and keep phone off and charging for 24 hours.

Day 3

12. Boot up your phone, and start reinstalling your apps. If the phone says there's no connection to the cellular network, then that means the SIM swap didn't work - go back to step 10.

13. Turn on passwording and require a PIN to unlock the phone.

14. Install Find my iPhone from the app store.

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