There is nothing worse than having your property stolen, whether that be an iPhone, an iPad or anything else. Getting it back may not repair all the damage, but it certainly goes some way to helping.

If you went to New York’s 5th Avenue flagship Apple Store, then you may have seen some of the cities finest, the NYPD, suggesting that new iPhone owners register their latest purchases with them. The reason? To help get hardware back to the rightful owners should the need arise.

In a day and age where Find My iPhone has already proven to be hugely popular in helping to retrieve stolen property, there’s no reason not to add another string to your iPhone-retrieving bow…

Officers are also suggesting the engraving of a unique I.D. number right onto the device will also aid in getting stolen devices back to the right people, while also reducing the resale value of the hardware in question. Not many people will buy a stolen iPhone if it’s been branded in such a way, the NYPD notes.

We’re not sure we would want to have anything engraved on our shiny new iPhones, but then again, we don’t want them to go missing forever, either.

Have you ever had to track down a stolen iDevice? How successful were you?

[Ars Technica]

  • Mysteroy3k

    Double edged sword

    • Falk M.

      I’d give them an encrypted key… (made from a password and your device IMEI)

      That way, only when you go there with your claim, they can actually use the info.
      It should work that way, to aid making this service attractive and in the long run, the iPhone being not an image of desire to thieves, but the mostly registered device that will screw the thief. 😛

  • This is great but branding a iPhone will also effect it’s resale value ..

    • Bob

      Yes, as it says in the original post.

  • I’ve had to track my iPhone twice. Once, it fell down the side of my bed. Find my iPhone buzzed it since it was on silent. The 2nd time, it was located at the elementary school. My 7 year old son had it in his pocket and forgt about. My new iPad was left in a shopping cart at Academy Sports. A customer turned it in to the manger and I was called. Considered myself lucky on that one.

  • It’s a frickin’ phone!! Put more resources to fight real crime.

    • Ashton Pal

      People stealing phones from other people is a real crime even if you and other people don’t see it that way. It might not be on the bigger scale compared to other crimes, but it is a crime nonetheless. Theft is the same, it doesn’t matter if it’s an iPhone, a wallet or a car.

    • Here is the story that happened 4 days ago, my friend was helping his GF to catch a cab at 3 am, in the City Hall area (NYC) across the street from where he lives
      the dude crossing the street pulled the iPad out of his GF’s purse and ran away, my guy started chasing him, as soon as he reached the corner the other asshole smashed him down on the ground with a metal pipe, almost breaking his elbow, thanks god he was shorter and missed, otherwise it could be brains on the ground
      so here is “it’s a frickin’ phone” IPad in this case

  • ReanimationXP

    Yes I’d love for the NYPD to track my every movement.

  • unsuccessful

  • My brothers iPhone 4 was stolen on a camping in Switzerland. On the same day he called the police and also gave then his iCloud ID and password so they were able to track it. The next moring he got a call from the police, that they tracked the phone succesfully some miles away and sent a patrol car there.. The thieves were really surprised and thought they got away with it, but that wasn’t the case. The next morning he got his phone back at the police station!

  • APLfan

    i lost my iPhone 4 twice and recovered using Find My iPhone