How to Track Stolen Phones

By Techwalla Electronics Editor

Tracking a phone after it has been stolen requires some pre-planning on your part. In most instances you need to install tracking devices and software on your phone in order to locate your stolen phone. If you have not done this, however, there may still be hope.

Step 1

Check your online GPS tracking service to find the location of your stolen phone. If you have a GPS service added to your cell phone or if it came with your cell phone, you should be able to track its location automatically by visiting the website provided with your GPS service and logging in. This will give you a location within 100 yards of where your phone is.

Step 2

Check with your cell phone provider to determine if they have a method of tracking individual cell phones. If you have an active cell phone service, you can tell your cell phone provider that your phone is lost or stolen and they may be able to locate the nearest cell tower that your phone has pinged.

Step 3

File a police report on your stolen phone. You may be able to convince police to file a subpoena to determine the latest location of your active cell phone. They may be able to work with your cell phone provider to ping your phone and determine its approximate vicinity.

Step 4

Have your cell phone provider check the identification number on your cell phone to determine if it has been activated in someone else's name. Many cell phone provider will not do this for you. But if you convince your provider that you did not authorize the person to use the phone, your provider may work with you.

Step 5

Send the phone a text or call the phone. Ask the person where he is. If he's stupid enough to steal your phone, he may be crazy enough to give you the location.