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bzguy
08-08-2016, 04:05 PM
Just received used refurbished Mac purchased in US from mac of all Trades.
It was promptly stolen in Hurricane looting here where I live in Belize before it could be registered, net was down.
Can it still be tracked with serial #?
Thanks for any help!

lclev
08-08-2016, 04:15 PM
If you report it to the police - yes. I would also contact Apple and tell them but I am not sure what they can offer. Also contact Mac of All Trades and tell them it was stolen - they may have a suggestion too.
Also if you have any home owners insurance check to see if there is any coverage??? Worth a shot.

Lisa

bzguy
08-08-2016, 04:22 PM
Sadly Mac of all Trades is staffed by one of their lesser quality products.
Robotic operation that deals in volume, service pretty much non-existent.
Emailed them 3 days ago, didn't even get the usual ticket # back acknowledging my existence.
I am in Belize which is unfortunately not on Apple's map either.
Alas, there is no mac dealer here, in true corporate model administration, our meager population simply doesn't count!
I entered my serial number & email and patiently waited for online chat help, watched wheel spin for an hour.
I assume they have my info, when I opted out of chat it was still on the screen with description of my problem.
They are aware of my attempt, but not holding my breath for help.

lclev
08-08-2016, 05:13 PM
Home owners insurance? I am at a lose for more ideas. It really is horrible for you. Sorry.

BTW: I just checked ResellerRatings.com and Mac of all Trades has a very low rating for customer service and quality of product. I would recommend if you buy again, to try Apple Refurbished. It will cost more but you get 1 year of apple care and it will work when you get it.

Lisa

chscag
08-08-2016, 05:42 PM
I'm not sure if customer service really matters in his case since his machine was stolen. Apple only keeps track of serial numbers for warranty verification and repairs. They do not get involved with stolen items. And I'm sure Mac of All Trades does not either. His best action is reporting the stolen machine and its serial number to the local Belize police department. If they do catch the thief or thieves and recover stolen goods, they would be able to return his machine if it's among the items recovered.

pm-r
08-08-2016, 05:51 PM
Any chance that Find My Mac was setup on the Mac before it was actually stolen???

If your Mac is lost or stolen
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204756

Or even any file sharing tracing you could use. But that would be bountiful.

bzguy
08-08-2016, 06:54 PM
Hello to all helpers, thanks for any attempt.
I guess what i really need to know is if I can get Apple to track it for a fee, I was assuming that each unit has an electronic ID unique to it's serial number.
I had no time or net access to set anything up, mother nature precluded that.
They are difficult at best to communicate with from Belize, it is not one of the countries on their menu and even 800 numbers cost a fortune due to telephone monopoly here.
P.S. Thumbs up clicked for all Lisa, Regards! bzguy

chscag
08-08-2016, 07:01 PM
I guess what i really need to know is if I can get Apple to track it for a fee, I was assuming that each unit has an electronic ID unique to it's serial number.

As stated above, Apple does not track stolen items. They leave that entirely up to you. As Patrick noted in his reply, if "Find My Mac" was set up by you it may have been possible to track it via the internet, but again, that's for you to do, not Apple.

bzguy
08-08-2016, 07:28 PM
As stated above, Apple does not track stolen items. They leave that entirely up to you. As Patrick noted in his reply, if "Find My Mac" was set up by you it may have been possible to track it via the internet, but again, that's for you to do, not Apple.

You have obviously never dealt with any police anywhere between the Rio Grande and Tierra Del Fuego.
But it has been done, people occasionally get hit by lightning, anything is possible.
Is there a service, a company, any way to track a mac without having previously set up an account?
How do they establish when a particular unit is online, is it some unique code you assign to it later?
I just assumed, I guess wrongly that each machine was identifiable from the info stored in it, for instance, "About this Mac".

pm-r
08-08-2016, 07:58 PM
I wouldn't expect much success but you could try some of the suggestions here, but I don't know what you do with your Macs or if you even had one before:
http://trendblog.net/track-stolen-laptop-without-installed-tracking-program/

If you did, use Apple's suggestions to protect yourself:
"If you can't find your Mac

Find My Mac is the only Apple service that can help track or locate a lost Mac. If you didn’t set up Find My Mac before your Mac was lost, or you can’t locate it, these steps might help you protect your data:
Change your Apple ID password to prevent anyone from accessing your iCloud data or using other services (such as iMessage or iTunes) from your Mac.
Change your passwords for other accounts you use with your Mac, including email, banking, and social sites like Facebook or Twitter.
Report your lost or stolen Mac to local law enforcement. They might request the serial number of your computer. You can find this information on the original box or receipt you received when you purchased your Mac. "
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204756

BTW: I'm sure glad that you survived the Hurricane Earl that hit Belize. I just took a quick look at some of the photos and videos. That's horrendous and a mess.

Will there be any insurance available to cover the cost of the "missing Mac"??? :[



- Patrick
======

harryb2448
08-08-2016, 08:03 PM
Having had a G5 Dual Core pilfered whilst being delivered by a courier, all Apple can do is take details, including serial number, and alert Stores and Resellers if it is taken to a store/Genius Bar. How good the staff will be checking serial numbers is an unknown, and how long the flyer from Apple is kept at the top of the list is anyone's guess.

bzguy
08-08-2016, 08:24 PM
OK, thanks all, the picture is getting clearer, my chances are slim to none.
I found that trendblog page on google, but 1rst thing I did was change password to email and facebook.
I forgot to sign out at at internet cafe once and scammers took over my accounts and changed all the "secret" account recovery questions.
There should be a secret question to change secret questions!
They attempted to extort money from my family and friends and microsoft made it near impossible to get my account back from the real thieves.
I live on an island in the Caribbean and salt air is rough on all electronics, I am typing on my 4th mac in 11 years and the 5th was the one stolen.
Thanks for the tip on apple refurbished, will be looking there now.
Thanks and regards, bzguy

KevinJS
08-08-2016, 09:09 PM
Not sure how much use it will be in this case, but every machine capable of connection to the Internet has a unique identifier; its MAC address.

I don't know whether it's possible to use that to trace a computer at ISP level. Just a thought.

bzguy
08-08-2016, 09:20 PM
Not sure how much use it will be in this case, but every machine capable of connection to the Internet has a unique identifier; its MAC address.

I don't know whether it's possible to use that to trace a computer at ISP level. Just a thought.

Precisely my thinking, but not a geek, that's why I came here, but so far no one seems to know.

KevinJS
08-08-2016, 09:31 PM
I assume ISPs are thin on the ground in Belize, so it's probably possible for them to identify it (if the thief uses it online, hasn't skipped over the border and doesn't know how to spoof a MAC address.)

Apple would likely have a record of the MAC address.

bzguy
08-08-2016, 09:35 PM
AHA! I thought so! This is a tourist destination, people track iphones down all the time.
You are quite correct about the sparsity of IP's, and modems here are all wifi, they find thieves this way, once you point them out to the police, they have to do their job.

KevinJS
08-08-2016, 09:39 PM
Well, I hope you can use the info to get your computer back. Good luck.

pm-r
08-08-2016, 11:10 PM
Not sure how much use it will be in this case, but every machine capable of connection to the Internet has a unique identifier; its MAC address.

I don't know whether it's possible to use that to trace a computer at ISP level. Just a thought.



I used to wonder why they couldn't until I started checking, and some sites like this describe the reasons and problems:
Can a MAC address be traced?
https://askleo.com/can_a_mac_address_be_traced/

Stolen smartphones are different as they use different tracking technology.





- Patrick
======

KevinJS
08-09-2016, 01:18 AM
Thanks for that info, Patrick.

chscag
08-09-2016, 02:23 AM
I assume ISPs are thin on the ground in Belize, so it's probably possible for them to identify it (if the thief uses it online, hasn't skipped over the border and doesn't know how to spoof a MAC address.)

Apple would likely have a record of the MAC address.

You're assuming the OP knows the MAC address of his stolen machine, and I'm doubtful that's something Apple keeps track of. Do you know that for sure?

Notice the question asked to Leo: "I know that all computers have a unique MAC address. But how traceable are they? If my laptop gets stolen, and I know my MAC address, can I get back to it if the person stole it gets connected to internet, even after formatting the machine and thinking that it’s safe to connect? Seems like this could stop laptop burglaries if that MAC address thing is traceable."

KevinJS
08-09-2016, 09:06 AM
It's a moot point. According to the article, the MAC address doesn't get beyond the router, so it can't be used to trace the machine.

pm-r
08-09-2016, 12:45 PM
It's a moot point. According to the article, the MAC address doesn't get beyond the router, so it can't be used to trace the machine.


I wonder if it can even get that far considering how many times simple file sharing has failed on our own local LAN network when I've attempted to use the MAC address as the Apple "Help" suggested some years ago.

And now "security" is a real butinski that Apple insists on… and the MAC address is probably a taboo area… but I'm just babbling…

chscag
08-09-2016, 04:07 PM
but I'm just babbling…

Not really.... nor did I mean to discourage the OP, however, right now his only chance of recovering the stolen machine is if the Belize police catch the thieves or thief and recover his MacBook Pro. It's difficult enough in the US or Canada to try to recover stolen Macs or iPhones; I can't imagine it would be any easier in Belize.

KevinJS
08-09-2016, 05:01 PM
Not really.... nor did I mean to discourage the OP, however, right now his only chance of recovering the stolen machine is if the Belize police catch the thieves or thief and recover his MacBook Pro. It's difficult enough in the US or Canada to try to recover stolen Macs or iPhones; I can't imagine it would be any easier in Belize.

We all fool ourselves. Sorry to get political, but in spite of the platitudes of politicians etc claiming the contrary, crime DOES pay. The criminal only has to be lucky once. We have to be lucky all the time, while assuming that everyone around us has nothing better to do than steal anything that isn't nailed down.

I've lost count the number of times I've seen "I bought this iPhone off craigslist/eBay/Kijiji and it's iCloud locked. How can I unlock it?" AAAARRRGGGHHH!!!! STOP BUYING STOLEN PROPERTY!!!

Anyway, that unloaded, I feel much happier now.

@chscag is right. There is little hope of recovering this stolen item, or most others. I hate victim blaming, but being ever vigilant is the only sure fire way of standing any chance of hanging on to your property.