You want to find out the process of how to unlock stolen iPhone legally. More than likely, you figured out that the iPhone you recently bought online got stolen. Perhaps, you came by a lost iPhone, and it displays a message that the iPhone is lost or stolen. First things first, find out everything about an iPhone with a quick IMEI check. All the details you can find out about an iPhone go towards helping with the unlock process.
Most people understand that holding on to a stolen iPhone, or anything else for that matter, does more harm than good. Anyone who finds that they have unknowingly ended up with a stolen iPhone should try to get it back to its owner. Some people claim that it is a complicated process returning a stolen iPhone to its owner. There is the shame that comes with having a stolen item in your possession, even if you obtained the item legally. Anyone who has lost an iPhone worth hundreds of dollars and gets it returned to them will be happy to get it back.
Finding out the process of how to unlock stolen iPhone legally helps out in part with getting it back to its owner. This post discusses how to go about getting a stolen iPhone back to its rightful owner.
How To Get A Stolen iPhone Back To Its Owner
The sad fact is that you are no longer safe fishing out your iPhone to use it in a public place. Worst still is if you carry your iPhone in your back pocket and use public transport. The reality is that iPhone are pieces of tech gold, and everyone wants to get their hands on them. It takes a single moment to lose an iPhone in a public place if you are not paying close attention.
Anyone who has ever lost an iPhone, or just about anything for that matter, knows that it is disheartening. Add in the cost factor, and iPhones are pricey items to lose. For every lost iPhone, there is someone out there handling that particular phone. It does not matter how you ended up with a stolen iPhone, the right thing to do is to get it back to its rightful owner. The first step is to get a hold of a stolen iPhone owner’s contacts.
The Find My iPhone Lost Mode Message
The first thing any lost iPhone owner does is to get on the iCloud site. Through the site, they can access Find My iPhone feature and enable the Lost Mode. When the feature gets activated, it remotely locks the iPhone and allows a message to run on its screen. The displayed message gives an alternative number to contact the iPhone owner.
As a person with an iPhone owner attempting to return it to its rightful owner, you should call the number running on the iPhone screen. It may feel strange trying to explain the situation. Just tell them how you found the iPhone and that the Lost Mode message is how you found the contact number. The iPhone owner will appreciate knowing that they can get their iPhone back.
If The iPhone Has No Passcode
Maybe the iPhone does not have a passcode, and the owner has not yet placed it in lost mode. Yes, some people still do not use passcodes on their iPhones. It may feel like you are invading their privacy, but this is an exception. You have to go through their contacts and last dialed numbers list. You want to look for numbers saved as “mom,” “dad,” or “home.”
If you do not find any of those contacts on their phone, then look at the numbers frequently dialed. The likelihood is that the most dialed number will be a spouse’s number or family member. You can call the number and once again explain how you found the iPhone.
The iPhone Has A Passcode
If the iPhone has a passcode, it will not allow you access the functions of an iPhone. iPhone 5 and newer models. The passcode also offers a layer of protection for apps such as Apple Pay. In general, with a passcode locked stolen iPhone the person handling it will not have much use out of it. However, one thing most people do not realize is that you can bypass passcode with Siri.
Siri can assist with placing calls or sending out text messages from a passcode locked iPhone. In such a case, you can try giving Siri instructions to “Call home,” “Call dad,” “Call mom,” or “Call my partner or wife.” If it does not work, it means that the owner disabled sending texts or making calls with the passcode activated.
The Siri Method Fails
If the Siri method does not work, keep the phone powered on and fully charged. Based on the particular situation, the owner might try to call the iPhone as well as other people who have the phone number. It does feel awkward picking up a call on a phone that is not your, but it is the surest way to get it back to its owner.
The other reason why you want to keep the iPhone powered on is to allow the iPhone owner to trace it through the Find My iPhone service. If the iPhone has an Activation Lock or runs a Lost Mode message, then you want to keep it powered on for as long as possible.
Using The iPhone IMEI To Get The Owner’s Contact Information
All efforts to get the iPhone owner’s contacts or reach them to return the iPhone have failed. Next, you want to get a full iPhone status check to reveal what you should know about the phone. You will need the iPhone’s IMEI to run the status check.
You can find the iPhone IMEI displayed on the back cover of most recent iPhone models. Some iPhones have the IMEI number indicated on the bottom part of the SIM tray as well. If you bought the iPhone online, you might already have the IMEI number if you had asked the seller for it. Alternatively, if you bought the iPhone from an auction house and had received an iPhone status check certificate from them, it should have the IMEI number indicated on it.
With the IMEI check, you can uncover most of the iPhone’s details including its iCloud lock and blacklist status. If the iPhone got blacklisted, you could find out the particular service provider that blacklisted it. The status check also reveals other helpful details on whether the iPhone is under contract or warranty. You can use the information regarding the service provider to reach out to them and possibly give you the owner’s contacts.
When You Need To Try The Process Of How To Unlock Stolen iPhone Legally
So far, every method discussed on getting a stolen iPhone back to its rightful owner requires a lot of effort on your part. Anyone who loses an iPhone never gives up on it. Some people have given accounts of looking for months for their stolen iPhones. If you lose your iPhone, you would want someone to try and get it back to you.
Let’s say you have tried everything and you cannot get a hold of the original iPhone owner. You spent a significant amount of money buying the iPhone, and you do not want it to go down the drain. At this point, you can try different processes of how to unlock stolen iPhone legally.
iPhone With An Activation Lock
The likelihood is that the stolen iPhone you have is activation locked. The iPhone Activation Lock acts as a theft protective measure. The Activation Lock works to prevent anyone other than its rightful owner from accessing the phone. It makes use of an Apple ID and password that you should enter for full access to the phone. Most pre-used iPhone buyers end up looking for an activation lock hack to give them access to the locked iPhone.
When turned on, the Find My iPhone service automatically enables the Activation Lock. Now, when an iPhone gets lost or stolen the owner will place it in Lost Mode. When placed in Lost Mode, the only way to reactivate the iPhone is by entering the original owner’s Apple ID and password.
The other thing anyone who loses an iPhone does is to call their service provider and get it blacklisted. So, it is possible to have a stolen iPhone that is blacklisted and not activated locked. However, it is feasible to find an inverse situation or one that is both blacklisted and activation locked. Getting an iPhone status check helps to know the particular situation you are working with when unlocking.
The only way to unblacklist an iPhone is through the service provider. Given that the process requires the original owner to get the iPhone unblacklisted it means that you need to contact the iPhone owner. The worst case is to write to Apple explaining why you are trying different methods on how to unlock stolen iPhone legally. Apple may help with removing the Activation Lock, depending on the situation. However, when it comes to the blacklist situation only the network provider and original iPhone owner can help.
Read our comprehensive guide on How To Unlock iCloud Legally.