We hope this has never happened to you, but sometimes, things get stolen—things that are important to us. Cell phones are a major target for thieves, since they can be easily resold for a decent profit. But what happens to your phone after it’s taken from you? What kind of journey does it go on? That’s what filmmaker Anthony van der Meer wanted to find out with his short film Find My Phone, which he documents the process of tracking his stolen iPhone using hidden software.
“A little while ago, I was having lunch in Amsterdam when my iPhone was stolen. By the time I realized my phone was gone and I had called the police, it was already too late. On ‘find my iPhone,’ I was able to see the last few meters the thief had walked before the phone went offline. Losing such an expensive phone wasn’t even my biggest concern. But the idea of a stranger having access to all my photos, videos, contacts, emails, and messages… The way in which the thief worked made me wonder: What kind of person would steal a phone? And where do these phones end up? To find out, I started an investigation.
The investigation began with a decoy phone, which van der Meer equipped with the ability to track its location, make audio and video recordings, and take photos, all remotely, and all without the thief knowing anything about it. Once the phone is taken, it’s interesting to see van der Meer control it remotely, like he’s looking through a window in to the life of a thief. It’s a truly fascinating process that’s best described in the film, so check it out for yourself above.
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Featured Image: Daniel Grothe/Flickr