An iPhone is indeed the apple of the eye of many teenagers. Many want to own the latest iPhone but not all can afford it. So, how about forming a group of 50 people and looting the nearest Apple store? It looks very easy to steal from an Apple store as all the iPhones and latest Apple devices are just kept on a table and security is almost none. But it is a dumb idea to raid an Apple store. Why?
For starters, the iPhones that are just “kept on the table” can simply be considered as “demo units” with Apple’s own enterprise grade device management OS. Very little is publicly known about this software but it does a really good job at rendering these stolen “demo units” as useless the moment they leave the perimeter of the Apple store.
The real ‘loot’ is always protected in a safe the size of a room with electronic locks and of course lots of cameras in a discreet part of the store. In fact, it would actually take a lot of skills to ‘successfully’ raid an Apple store in minutes. And no amount of motivation derived from watching Money Heist episodes can help otherwise law-abiding citizens rob the ‘safe room’ of an Apple store. It’s like a bank.
A lot of young people in Philadelphia, US understood this fact the hard way. Recently, a crowd of juveniles, around 100, looted the Apple Walnut Street Store along with other stores in the area, including Chestnut and Lululemon, in City Center. While you may be thinking that they would be partying hard right now, little did they know that the iPhones that they easily stole from the Apple store got permanently locked the moment they left with their loot.
Not just that, the location of those iPhones are tracked continuously, even if the iPhones are switched off and cops may be just reaching their apartments soon. Already 20 people have been arrested. Apple can remotely activate an alarm on the stolen iPhones and the locked devices show a message which reads: “Please return to Apple Walnut Street. This device has been disabled and is being tracked.”
To make things worse, the camera gets activated and it may record videos or photos of the person holding a stolen iPhone.
So, after raiding an Apple store, you are sitting in your apartment with a disabled iPhone that is playing an alarm, recording you and your location is getting tracked. While you try to figure out a way to reset the phone or call for “tech support”, the police may be banging on your doors any minute. This is exactly why many “raiders” in Philadelphia simply abandoned their loot just outside the store itself. And for the rest, Apple’s insured.
Apple Store FAQ:
What is the Apple Store’s shoplifting policy?
Apple has a strict shoplifting policy and works closely with local law enforcement agencies to track and get people arrested if someone is caught shop lifting. For most devices, Apple remotely disables devices and tracks the location.
Can Apple track stolen products?
Yes, Apple uses its own software to track stolen devices.