Are You Protected Against A Lost or Stolen Cell Phone?
I thought I was going to have to drop some serious money last Friday, as I spent most of the morning frantically searching for my lost cell phone. It was frustrating because I know I took it with me to work, and before I noticed I didnâ€™t have it, I visited my office and two other places all physically within 30 feet of each other.
I ripped my office apart, searched the meeting room, and visited my coworkerâ€™s office countless times hoping that eventually something would trigger my memory and lead me to a device that had access to my social media accounts, email, and hundreds of pictures. My phone was on silent so calling it to try to locate it by the ringer sound wouldnâ€™t work.
My iPhone using friends added to my frustration by mentioning that iOS has a feature that would locate the phone, and cause the ringer to sound even if the phone was on silent. I searched the internet and found a handful of apps that could be installed on Android phones to accomplish the same thing, but I would have to install one of them proactively.
I thought I was completely out of luck. I searched my wireless providerâ€™s website and found it would cost me over $300 to replace my Galaxy S4. I started thinking about my options including searching for a used phone.
I did one more search in a last chance effort to find something that could help me, and with a stroke of luck I found gold. I found an article about the Google Android Device Manager that seemed to have the capability that I was looking for. I did not specifically install the app, but I did have other Google related things installed on my phone, and wondered if I would be lucky enough to have had the Android Device Manager installed without my knowledge as part of a bundle.
I went to the android device manager website, signed in with my google account, and clicked on the button to locate my phone. It popped up a map of my employerâ€™s building and put a blue circle around the part of the building where my office is located. I then hit the button to make the ringer go off at full volume for five minutes.
I heard my phone ringing from the meeting room 20 feet from my office.
I sprinted to the room and looked around. I could hear my phone, but couldnâ€™t see it. I finally located it resting on the metal frame underneath the seat of the office chair I had been sitting in a few hours earlier. My best guess is that the phone slid out of my shorts pocket when I put my feet up on the table (I was the only one in the room, listening to a phone meeting), ricocheted off the lever that adjusts the height of the chair, and lodged itself firmly into the frame out of sight.
Without Android Device Manager I would have NEVER found that phone.
It turns out Android Device Manager has an option to let you lock your phone, or factory reset it remotely as well, however those functions need to be enabled by the user. Once I got my phone back, I quickly enabled those features in case my phone is ever stolen.
I got lucky that Android Device Manager was installed on my phone. Had it not been installed, I would have likely never found my phone and would have had to drop some cash to replace my device. If youâ€™re not sure if you have such an app installed on your phone, I suggest you take a few minutes to ensure youâ€™re protected.
Have you ever lost your phone? Did you use an app to help locate it?
Brought to you courtesy of Brock