12 Replies Latest reply: Aug 12, 2009 6:37 PM by Lyssa
Bennason Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Not sure if there is a sperate place for these types of questions or reports. My MacBook was recently stolen and I am wondering what steps I should take with apple to report it. I heard apple has a program to help recover stolen products by taking a picture of the person with the built in camera whenever it is connected to the Internet. Anyone else heard of this? Also I need to obtain the serial number of my MacBook for police reasons. I called apple support but they are unable to give me my own serial number due to security reasons. I was told the police would be able to call apple security to obtain it but they were unable to give me apple's security phone number for, again, security reasons. Anyone know of a way to retrieve this information? Also any tips or other help concerning my situation would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Macbook 13' white, Mac OS X (10.5.7)
  • 1. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Matt Clifton Level 7 Level 7 (27,790 points)
    Apple doesn't have such a program (the camera ID). There are third-party products which do this kind of thing, but you have to purchase and install them before your computer is stolen.

    For your serial number, I'm very surprised that Apple wouldn't give you that information, since you would be able to give them your personal ID, including credit card information. Did you buy the Macbook from Apple? I would call again and be insistent.

    Matt
  • 2. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    iSMH Level 5 Level 5 (4,310 points)
    +Also I need to obtain the serial number of my MacBook for police reasons. I called apple support but they are unable to give me my own serial number due to security reasons. I was told the police would be able to call apple security to obtain it but they were unable to give me apple's security phone number for, again, security reasons.+

    It would be on your original receipt, any repair receipts and/or any AppleCare documentation you would have received if you registered an extended warranty.
  • 3. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Bennason Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Ok I found the serial number on the original box and reported the MacBook missing to apple. They said next time the serial is ran for anything such as repairs then it will show up as stollen and appropriate action will be taken. Now I'm wondering if there is anyway the MacBook can be tracked using any sort of network or physical address that is unique to the laptop. I read a story of someone who used a mobile me account to remotely access his stollen MacBook and was able to take photos of yw thief using photobooth. Is it worth trying? How would I set up an account without my laptop? Any other suggestions? Thanks in advance
  • 4. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    iSMH Level 5 Level 5 (4,310 points)
    MobileMe would have to be setup on the machine before it was taken.
  • 5. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    littlesongbird Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    how do you report the macbook missing to Apple? mine was stolen this week.
  • 6. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    littlesongbird Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    my mobile me was set up before the mac was stolen. HOW WOULD I ACCESS THE MACBOOK WITH MOBILE ME? Also, with security password activated won~t the thief have to get a new hardrive to use the machine?
  • 7. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)
    Sorry to hear that your unit has been stolen. Apple does not have a formal flagging process for reporting stolen or lost property, though some people have reported that Apple tech support has in some cases made note of the theft. You should contact your local law enforcement agency to report the theft.

    This information is taken verbatim (with minor changes) from the following Apple KnowledgeBase article:

    How to report lost or stolen Apple product?

    Regards.
  • 8. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    varjak paw Level 10 Level 10 (169,765 points)
    HOW WOULD I ACCESS THE MACBOOK WITH MOBILE ME?

    Here's how it was done:

    http://db.tidbits.com/article/9608

    with security password activated won~t the thief have to get a new hardrive to use the machine?

    Sorry but no. There are a number of ways around the passwords unless you set up File Vault in which case your data would be protected. But all the thief would have to do would be reformat the hard drive to be able to reinstall the OS and use/sell the system. Only if there's unremovable driver-level encryption on the system, only available from third party developers, would the hard drive be rendered unusable.

    Message was edited by: Dave Sawyer
  • 9. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Seagoat Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I had a Macbook and Imac stolen in February by a home invasion. Apple told me first over the phone that they could take a picture when it was used next and work with the police to locate the robber. I kept checking with Apple and each time the story changed. It went from that to they can only see if someone calls in through Apple Care and the police would have to contact them. Well, my local police said that Apple would have to contact them and it went back and forth and neither did anything for me. I called Apple again and asked to speak to the service person's manager who came on. She told me Apple doesn't really do anything and that I had been misinformed through the process. My question to her was basically why do we register the products and contact them over and over only to be told much later that they don't do anything. And good luck getting the police to help you in any matters with a robbery. My locals did nothing. Wouldn't even fingerprint the surfaces where I SAW the robber touch as he had a gun pointed at me.
  • 10. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Shangqi Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    How would you get your macbook stolen? Did you carelessly leave it at some place and think nobody would steal it?

    Even if I were to just go somewhere quickly for a short while, I would always close the lid so then it would be on a sleep mode and take mine with me. I'd never leave it unattended.

    Do you have your receipt?
  • 11. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Seagoat Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I guess you carelessly read my post. I got robbed at GUNPOINT during a HOME INVASION. The mofo put a GUN TO MY HEAD. He TOOK my computers and I didn't want to get shot. **** no I wasn't careless. I have all receipts, communications, serial #s, etc, etc, and Apple and the Police don't give a FU*K. Sorry for the crudeness, but it applies. I just hate hearing other people being lead that you will be helped and then they change their story. Apple repaired my dead hard drive under Apple Care, so that was very cool. However, it took about four months of bugging them to death to admit that they woudn't "track" or "report" anyone. The robber would have to call Apple Care and ask for help!
  • 12. Re: Stolen MacBook...
    Lyssa Level 6 Level 6 (15,515 points)
    Seagoat wrote:
    I guess you carelessly read my post. I got robbed at GUNPOINT during a HOME INVASION. The mofo put a GUN TO MY HEAD. He TOOK my computers and I didn't want to get shot. **** no I wasn't careless. I have all receipts, communications, serial #s, etc, etc, and Apple and the Police don't give a FU*K. Sorry for the crudeness, but it applies. I just hate hearing other people being lead that you will be helped and then they change their story. Apple repaired my dead hard drive under Apple Care, so that was very cool. However, it took about four months of bugging them to death to admit that they woudn't "track" or "report" anyone. The robber would have to call Apple Care and ask for help!

    Edit: Seagoat, you are NOT the OP here. Shangqi was responding to Bennason (the OP), not you. You need to make sure you notice which post a response is being directed to before you go making angry comments.
    As for your machine, the only thing you can do is report the theft to the police. As you've discovered, Apple won't help.

    ~Lyssa