Stealing an iPhone has to be one of the most stressful crimes to undertake and it has been so for years. This is mostly because of the tight security features that one’s Apple ID account has in place preventing a criminal from directly unlinking the handset from the account. However, it seems that some criminals have gotten too smart and found a cheeky way to lure iPhone owners from helping them steal the phone twice.
This is what happened to one Anna as reported by Kaspersky and has now found its way to the Kenyan soil as reported by a Twitter user mya_254. A few hours after her iPhone got stolen, she surprisingly received a text message on her then feature (Kabambe) phone stating,” “Your iPhone 11 Pro Gold 64GB has been found and temporarily connected to iCloud. View location: appIe.info/s7844g Sincerely, AppIe Support”.
As expected, any victim that just lost their device and gets to receive that message would get excited and instantly click the link. Knowing that she couldn’t do that with the phone she had at the time, she had to ask a friend for her laptop in order to access the sent link. Little did she know that the link she was sent was actually not from Apple and was actually used by the thieves to get her login credentials so they could have full control of the iPhone.
The first time she clicked the link, nothing came up and that should have been a warning sign but the text message seemed to have legitimately comes from Apple Support. A second text was then sent with the same link which she clicked and keyed in her details once again. Immediately she logged in, another notification came up stating that her iPhone had been erased and that was the end.
According to a similar case narrated published by Kaspersky, the victim was sent a link leading to a site whose small errors should have indicated that she was getting scammed. Unfortunately, the details were too tiny for anyone who’s just had their iPhone stolen to really notice.
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What You Should Do if Your iPhone Gets Stolen
Here are some tips on the actions to take immediately after the theft of an iPhone:
- Find another iPhone where you can access the Find My iPhone app and enable Lost Mode.
- Contact your service provider to block your SIM card. This is especially important if you do not have a PIN for your line.
- Enable the Erase iPhone mode instantly if it is clear that you might not get your phone back.
- If the scammers send text messages with the fake iCloud link to you make sure you keep them. This is useful in comparing it to the information on the Find My iPhone app. If it does not match then the SMS must be from the culprits themselves.
- Access icloud.com manually and carefully via a browser rather than a direct link. Be sure that you have entered the right site before keying in any login credentials.
- The scammers will most likely try to contact you again in order to rush you in making wrong decisions, Make sure you stay calm and do not access the links sent from them or remove the lost phone from the Find My iPhone app.
- The next best step would be to contact the authorities on how best to recover your stolen device.