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Everything You Should Do Before You Lose Your Phone

It's best to be prepared

It's an unfortunate fact that the pricey pocket computers we carry around with us at all times are prime targets for thieves—as well as very easy to leave behind in subway cars or on coffee shop tables. Now that we all rely on our smartphones for so much, having one stolen or misplaced can feel like the end of the world. But it doesn't have to be - not quite. Here are the preparations you can take before the worst happens, and what to do if it does.

Turn on Remote Tracking
Whether Android or iPhone, your phone will come with a built-in tool that lets you track it from the web or another device. On (stock) Android, it's called Find My Device, and you can enable it under the Security & location menu in Settings. On iOS, it's called Find My iPhone, and from Settings you need to tap your name, then your iPhone, to turn it on.

You can then track your Android phone from any device where you're signed in with the same Google account, or track your iPhone from any device where you're signed into the same Apple account. You can also view your phone's last reported location on the web, by going to your Google Account or the iCloud portal.

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