When business owner and working mom Monica Friel accidentally left her phone in the back of a cab--and had no way to get in touch with her kids-or her clients.
Immediately I panicked.
Monica activated her G-P-S tracking app through another device and traced her phone to a nearby hotel.
She called police asking for help, but instead she got quite a surprise.
"They were like, 'Oh yeah, sorry that's too bad.'"
If your Smartphone or tablet is stolen, finding out where it is may be simple…what to do next may be anything but easy…a call to police may get you no where.
"A lot of law enforcement don't have the man power to always be
dedicated to working on tracking your phone."
Former police chief and crime expert dr. Richard Weinblatt says many law enforcement agencies struggle to handle emergency calls - and finding your smart phone could be a Department's last priority.
Resources are a big problem for law enforcement agencies. They need to be able to allocate it to the violent crimes first. I mean if you're being stabbed do you want to be put on hold for 911 to say.
'I'm sorry we're dealing with a 200 dollar I-Phone, we have to go handle that.'"
Though when police can help, it may make a big difference. Scottia Evans left her husband's I-Pad on a city bus.
They tracked it down to a house and called the cops with the address. When an officer showed up and questioned a man walking out of the house with a bag-he immediately handed over their I-Phone.
When he saw the police there and saw the icon on the I-Phone screen he immediately became very cooperative and willfully returned it.
She was lucky... The call load for police that day wasn't so bad.
If there's a high priority call load or a particular call that we have to go to first then we'll handle that call with priority.
Monica decided it was too risky to confront someone in the hotel she traced her phone to without police, so she gave up and got a new one.
It was just really frustrating to be able to see the phone and know it was there and then not get it back.
Experts say she did the right thing-if police won't help don't take matters into your own hands.
You can get hurt you can get killed and it's not worth your life or your injury for a 200 dollar phone.
But there is something you can do about losing your gear.
GPS tracking software experts say the moment you realize your device is lost or stolen use the GPS app to "lock" it down.
So that an unauthorized user can't get access to it you give yourself a layer of security that gives your time to retrieve the device without having to be anxious the information is potentially being stolen or abused.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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