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PC World Latest NewsJul 19, 2024
How to find lost gadgets (and avoid losing them)

Coming home from a recent vacation, my wife left her phone at airport security. After a frantic race back from the gate, we were able to get the phone back without issue, along with a tip from the agent who was holding onto it: Put an emergency contact on the lock screen, so whoever finds your phone knows who to call.

There are actually a bunch of ways to do this, which I'll explain shortly. But the incident also brought to mind a broader point about how to deal with lost or stolen devices, both before and after the fact. If you have any trips coming up, it's worth taking a few minutes to know your options.

This column first appeared in Advisorator, Jared's tech advice newsletter. Sign up to get more tech tips every week.

iPhone users: Set up Family Sharing If you're traveling with a partner and both of you have iPhones, setting up Family Sharing lets you use Apple's Find My app to play a sound, enable "Lost Mode," or remotely trigger a factory reset on the other person's devices. (Family Sharing also has other benefits, like being able to share some subscriptions.)

Set it up under Settings Your Name Family Sharing, or view Apple's documentation for more details. Family Sharing alone does not share your device's location with family members. If you want to do that, head to Settings Your Name Find My, then enable "Share My L

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