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Lost my phone to a pickpocket today. I realize that Google can't help me get it back.

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By dr.eXntriK, Member on 20th April 2015, 03:27 PM
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I WAS an owner of a Nexus 5, very beloved to me because it was a gift for an achievement. Anyway, I use public transport almost everyday to get to places. Today while I was on my way to the university, I was targeted by a pickpocket who took away my phone

After a couple of minutes of running around and searching for the pickpocket I remembered the new "Find My Phone" feature Google launched recently. So I soon got into my account on a laptop and Googled "Find my Phone". Unfortunately, the thief had already switched it off and Google cannot locate it because its offline and switched off.

Now not only am I angry on the thief and myself, but I am also angry on Google. We've had Android Device Manager lying around for years and it already has Device Administrator permissions, yet it cannot switch on GPS, notify about SIM changes nor can it report the last known location of the phone. Its like the sheer existence of Android Device Manager is a waste.

I know you'd blame me for not having a third-party app to track my lost phone (I used to have an amazing and free app called Theftie which was pulled down by Google for an unknown reason) , but that's not the point. Why doesn't Google have a way to find and retrieve my android phone just like Apple has features to find lost iDevices. Why cant Android Device Manager turn on location and track a device even when it is locked. Why cant it prevent illegitimate flashing of devices?

Now I have ended up with no phone and I am left with no money (I've spent all my student budget money on college fee and to fund my final year project) and no phone (let alone smartphone). So the only way to get a new phone is to either do some kind of achievement or wait for two more months and those two months will like living in the Stone age.

Anyway, I request you android fans to help me send a message to Google, all OEMs and developers of custom recoveries, third-pary apps etc. We need a solution to prevent our phone from being stolen and in case it gets stolen, we want a way to retrieve our lost phones. We request all of you genius developers to work on securing not only our data but also our devices.

TL;DR: Had my phone pick-pocketed and the thief switched off the phone. Tried locating the phone using Android Device Manager and "Find My Phone" on Google. No use because the phone is neither online nor is it switched ON. Requesting Google and devs to come up with solutions to safeguard devices
20th April 2015, 04:06 PM |#2  
crachel's Avatar
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Obviously it's of no use to Nexus 5 users, but Google has addressed these problems with Android Device Protection that came with 5.1
20th April 2015, 05:05 PM |#3  
zerosum0's Avatar
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I'm sorry to hear of your loss. Believe me I know that panic,disbelief,frantically going through your pockets, as it dawns it's gone. I took out all trace apps on this because they are useless as you know.

Sent from my Nexus 5
20th April 2015, 06:03 PM |#4  
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Blacklist it....
Have the carrier "Blacklist" the imei then the pickpocket can not use it other than just parts... He/She may have just turned the phone off, keep on trying, they may try to turn it on to attempt to flash it.... you might also see where it is or has been if your "location history" was set to be "on" look in your google account "dashboard" its down the page a bit "location history"
20th April 2015, 11:25 PM |#5  
AndrasLOHF's Avatar
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Originally Posted by crachel

Obviously it's of no use to Nexus 5 users, but Google has addressed these problems with Android Device Protection that came with 5.1

Google has become more and more like a regular OEM these past couple updates in regards to holding out on features for no reason at all other than to generate sales on a new device.
21st April 2015, 04:40 AM |#6  
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Really sorry to your lost, and get a iphone next time
21st April 2015, 04:54 AM |#7  
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Downloaded Cerberus
21st April 2015, 05:53 AM |#8  
theesotericone's Avatar
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Originally Posted by dr.eXntriK

Unfortunately, the thief had already switched it off and Google cannot locate it because its offline and switched off

Let me get this straight. You're mad at Google because they don't have the ability to locate your phone that is turned off? Apple can't do that. No manufacturer can do that. It is impossible. The phone is off. Radios, GPS, data, sim. All of that requires power to function.
Last edited by theesotericone; 21st April 2015 at 05:58 AM.
21st April 2015, 01:00 PM |#9  
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If it's turned off, there obviously is no way to track it.

In Cerberus, you can disable the ability to turn off the phone while it is locked, as well as quick settings while locked (no airplane mode). This way, the thief has to stay online. It all works without root.
Last edited by jb91; 21st April 2015 at 01:15 PM.
21st April 2015, 02:19 PM |#10  
Gorgtech's Avatar
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Im sorry for your loss but you cannot blame Google or LG or anybody else for the lost phone. Let me guess, youre one of the guys who puts his phone, wallet or other valuable items in his back pocket ? This is a invitation for every scumbag to snatch it...

I use Cerberus and even this App is not 100% safe if the thief knows how to get rid of it. On the other hand, Cerberus can send you a Email with the new SIM details but in order to function properly, your device needs to be rooted.

Better luck next time. I see people on a regular basis who dont seem to care about losing their stuff.
21st April 2015, 02:24 PM |#11  
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I like that cerberus can hide itself from the Apps menu. A careless thief might not be aware the app is loaded and running, and taking a SNAPSHOT of his face

Remote wipe is a nice last resort option.
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