Trying to buy a new iPhone? These devices are some of the biggest mobile investments you can make. They are also a popular item in the black market and can often be stolen devices, which can often mean bad news.
All moral and legal issues aside (that’s personal stuff), users will often find out they have purchased very expensive paperweights. This is because Apple has made it very easy to lock stolen iOS 7+ devices via the Find my iPhone feature.
With that in mind – how can a buyer stay protected? Sometimes the carrier will be alerted of a stolen device. The carrier will often not allow such devices to be activated gain. You can simply call your carrier’s customer care to find out.
Another way to find out if an iPhone has been stolen is via a tool Apple has released. It helps you find out if a phone has been locked via the Find my iPhone feature.
Locking an iPhone is often the first thing a user will do after losing a device. After this is done, a device is deemed useless and can’t be used unless you have the original owner’s Apple account details (username and password).
How to find out if an iPhone has been locked
- If you have the device in your hands, you could try to use it and see if the device is locked.
- If you want to double-check, or the device is not within reach, go to www.icloud.com/activationlock/.
- Enter the device’s serial number or IMEI (here’s how to find those details).
- Enter the human check code.
- Press “continue”.
- If locked, try to contact the previous owner and have him follow Apple’s instructions to remove the Activation Lock.
It’s a simple process, but do keep in mind mobile browsers are currently not supported. Be sure to have access to a computer and check your device’s Activation Lock status before you hand out your cash!