New York News

Apple crime up 40 percent in New York City

Tuesday, September 25, 2012
iphone smartphone

Apple products are a big hit with thieves, as one out of every seven crimes in New York City involves the theft of an Apple product. And the numbers are going up.

The NYPD has a warning for iPhone and iPad users to stay alert, because the Big Apple is having an Apple crime wave.

While thousands of New Yorkers stormed Apple stores to be among the first to score the iPhone 5 last Friday, thieves were also anticipating the new release.

The NYPD says more criminals are targeting Apple products, and while overall crime is up 4 percent in New York City, Apple product crime is up 40 percent.

According to department records, of the more than 79,000 crimes so far this year, more than 11,000 of them thousand involve an Apple product.

Many of the victim's are distracted when the robbers strike. The NYPD has released a public service announcement warning people to be aware of their surroundings while using their gadgets.

It's something iPhone users say they're taking seriously.

Tips to protect your iPhone, iPad and your data

1) Keep your device out of view or at lower profile in public. You are at risk of theft while using devices at coffee shops, restaurants and on mass transit.

2) Don't leave your device unattended or in plain view inside a parked car or purse, for example.

3) Use the free Find My iPhone app to locate a lost or stolen iPhone. The app is one of several that allows used to remotely erase data from a device. Similar programs are available for Androids and other smart phones.

4) Activate your passcode on your iPhone or iPad by opening the Settings, choosing General, Passcode Lock, and entering a four-digit code. You can also assign passcodes to individual apps to protect your data.

5) Several location-tracking apps allow you to use the device's camera to take a picture of the thief, and then email that photo to you. It may not improve the odds of recovering the phone, but it could help prosecute a thief.

6) Record the serial number of your iPhone or iPad. Look on the back cover, or open Settings>General>About and scroll to the serial number entry. You can also get this number when the device is connected to a computer and you open iTunes.

7) Also note the devices 15-digital International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number engraved on the back of some iPhones and iPad models. Apple's support offers more details on where to find the number. The IMEI can be used to prevent a phone from accessing the cell network.


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