Track Down Stolen Mac, iPhone or iPod Touch with iCloud

The last thing you would want to happen to your gadgets or valuables is to misplace them or worse, get stolen. No matter how we despise this idea, we have to accept the fact that it does happen- and it can happen to you.

With that being said, should you find out one day that your Apple device got stolen or misplaced, what’s the first thing you should do? Okay, breathe in, breathe out and continue reading.

Apple’s iCloud has a lot of nice features and what’s nice about it is that you can sync all your Apple devices by using just one user login we call, Apple ID. With iCloud, you can instantly access your notes, contacts, calendars, bookmarks, photos, etc, anywhere using your Mac, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

Aside from the sync feature, an important facet of the iCloud is Find My *insert Apple device here*. As long as your iDevice is connected to the Web, you ‘ll be able easily track down its location, display a warning message or play a sound and even lock or wipe it remotely. This can be done by logging in to your iCloud account via a web browser ( or using the Find My iPhone App on your iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.

Find My iPhone Web access via

Find My Iphone Web via

Find My iPhone iPad App:

Find My iPhone iPad App

However, for Mac (OS X Lion) users, there is one important reminder: IF YOUR MAC IS PASSWORD PROTECTED UPON LOGIN, and it got stolen, you are in serious trouble because there is no way for the person in possession of your device to access your Macbook, which means no Internet access on your Mac, making the Find My Mac feature useless — UNLESS you activate the “Guest User” login account. Actually this is not a full user account. When someone tries to access the Guest User option, the Mac will boot a secured Safari-only portrayal of the system, allowing access to the Internet, thus allowing the owner to track down the Mac’s location using iCloud’s Find My Mac.

To activate the “Guest User” security feature, go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy. Uncheck “Disable restarting to Safari when screen is locked”. And you are set.

Mac “Guest User” Disable restarting to Safari when screen is locked security feature

Enough said. Let’s now discuss how to take full advantage of this security feature. Here’s how to activate Find My iPhone feature on your Mac and iPad (iPhone and iPod Touch, all the same) respectively.

On your Mac, go to System Preferences > iCloud. Make sure “Find My Mac” is checked.

Setting up Find My Mac on iCloud

On the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, go to Settings > iCloud. Make sure “Find My iPad(iPhone)” is ticked on.

Find My iPhone iCloud setting on iPad


8 comments on “Track Down Stolen Mac, iPhone or iPod Touch with iCloud

  1. My MacBook was stolen in Sihanoukville on May 20, 2012.

    Have receipt from dealer in Phnom Phen. Don’t have the serial number with me but shall secure it.

    Did not do as I now have learned can be done regarding security. Is it poossible to still use this technology to attempt to recover it?

    My e-mail address id

    Desperately need this computer to continue the MedicAngel effort to help the poor.

    All assistance appreciated.

    Thank you.

    Daniel J. Lavigne

  2. my iphone was stolen last night and i already disabled it through the phone company, but i have no tracking devices on it. is there anyway i can find the thief that took it?


  3. i lost my ipod touch, and when I was using it I did not install find my Ipad app on it.
    I have tried to log into apple website to track the lost ipod touch, but it would not let me logged on whenever I click on tracking option.
    Otherwise, I can still access my data saved on my computer through iTunes using my past apple ID, is there still a way to recover the lost iPod touch?
    thanks for your help.

  4. Hi all,

    The only way I know (or at least the easiest and most possible way) to track down a lost or stolen iPhone is via iCloud’s “Find my iPhone/Mac” feature. Without this activated, I am not quite sure how to track the device.


  5. I have 2 iPod touches & both have the same apple I’d…one got stolen today & the one that got stolen did not have the icloud acct or the find my iPod can it still be tracked with a serial number…

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