Every day, thousands of phones get stolen across the world – and there is often very little chance that these will be recovered, even with the ‘Find My Phone’ app and other security applications turned on.
One film student in The Netherlands decided to make an experiment to see what actually happens to a stolen phone and whether he could get to know someone using the contents of his phone. Anthony van der Meer did this after his first phone was stolen and he realized how much information the thief could have gotten from him using that phone.
He installed spyware into the phone so he could control it without the thief knowing.
So, setting up cameras and asking friends to take part of the experiment as filmmakers, he placed the phone inside a bag and ‘left’ it at a crowded spot but after four days of waiting for the bag to be stolen, nothing happened. They moved to another city but the same thing happened: the bag and the phone remained intact.
Thinking that the experiment was a failure and that no one would steal the phone, he and his friends turned off the camera and went home – but just when there were no cameras rolling, the phone got stolen in the subway! What an irony.
Amazingly, the thief did not immediately turn off the phone; though whoever took the gadget traveled to another city as shown by the spyware’s audio recording and geo-tracking. The thief didn’t reset the phone, either; he actually waited several weeks before actually resetting the gadget. By that time, though, the student was already able to take several of his photos, copied the contents of his contact list, and read through his text messages.
Watching the student’s video was rather disturbing, not just because the thief did some disturbing things but also because it brings to attention the fact that this film student was able to spy on the thief for weeks without the latter noticing – and such could actually happen to any of us! Isn’t that terrifying?
You’ll surely get some goose bumps while watching this video: