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Education

Outsmart gadget thieves

Students with the latest phones and other equipment are being urged to make the most of their gadgets to outsmart thieves. Thousands of students have descended on Sunderland to start the new term at Sunderland University, most of which will rely on smartphones and other devices to store personal information including contact lists, photographs and music.

With this in mind, Sunderland University officer, PC Gemma Calvert, is encouraging them to put their appliances to their full potential by using built-in GPS tracking systems to help officers locate them should they be stolen.

These systems are available via iCloud on the latest Apple products and let owners locate not only their phone, but any other missing Apple devices on a map with the exact location pinpointed. With older models, the find my iPhone app can be used, again through iCloud.

People can also choose to display a message, play a sound, remotely lock the device or erase their data should it get into the wrong hands.

Similar tracking apps are available for other smartphone and mobile technology.

The advice comes after Operation Soundwave, the Northumbria Police campaign aiming to ‘turn up the volume’ on crime and silence opportunist criminals.

PC Calvert said: “Many phones and other devices now have GPS tracking systems and people should make the most of this. For those without these built in, tracking apps are available.

“This tracking technology could make a huge difference to anyone unfortunate enough to become a victim of theft by helping to locate the stolen item.

“I’d also recommend students register their goods with Immobilise, the national property register which again allows us to return goods to their rightful owner if stolen and recovered.

“By working together and following crime prevention advice, we are ensuring thieves are stopped in their tracks.”


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