Ever since I set up my iPad, iPhone, iMac, and Apple TV to share all of my photos, I’ve wondered about whether a thief would make the mistake of using the camera so that I could have a clear picture of the criminal to use against him. I mean, if you’re stupid enough to steal an iPad, even though everyone knows that Apple can track it down for you (using the Find My iPhone app), then you’re probably stupid enough to take pictures of yourself with it. Thanks to a recent story in Henrico VA, I have my answer.
According to local news WRIC 8News, a 12-year-old autistic boy lost his means of communication when his iPad was stolen from the family’s shopping cart. Twelve-year-old Daanish Ali is unable to speak due to severe Autism. However, Daanish learned to communicate with his family thanks to an iPad app that let him pick words that he wanted to convey. When the tablet was stolen, his voice was cut off. “It’s not just an iPad. That is his means of communication. That is his voice,” Daanish’s mother, Dilshad Ali, said in an interview with 8News.
After the device had been missing for a short period of time, Ali noticed new images appearing on her iPhone’s Photo Stream. Images of people she didn’t know. Upon closer inspection of one of the photos, she could clearly see the iPad, still in it’s special case, in a mirror’s reflection. “I looked at it closely, and [saw that] it’s a mirror—a mirror in the background with a reflection of a woman taking a picture with the iPad,” said Ali.
The iPad was recovered on Monday, although the iPad app Daanish uses to communicate with had been deleted. The family will have to reconfigure the app to Daahish’s needs, something it took over a year to figure out in the first place.
The Henrico County Police say they don’t believe the people pictured in the photos are responsible for taking the iPad and the investigation into the theft will continue.
If there is any lesson to be learned here it is that everyone should set up Photo Stream to have images automatically sent to their iPhone, Apple TV, or computer. If someone uses your iPad without your permission, there is a chance they will take a picture of themselves with it. It is hard to resist that front-facing camera. I know the first thing I did when I got iPad was take a picture of myself.