Apple could be tracking iPhones stolen during looting

Apple could be tracking iPhones stolen during looting
FILE PHOTO: A person leaves the Apple Store as a police car burns during the Justice for George Floyd Philadelphia Protest on Saturday, May 30, 2020. (Matt Rourke/AP)

Apple may be tracking phones taken during looting spawning from protests and demonstrations over the death of George Floyd, multiple media outlets are reporting.

Apple is also disabling phones that were taken, making them inoperable, CNN reported.

Stores, which had been closed for weeks because of the coronavirus pandemic, were shut again once there were reports of vandalism and thefts at stores in New York, Philadelphia and Washington, DC.

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A message displays on the screens of the phones that says to return it to the location from which it was taken. It also warns that the device is being tracked and police will be alerted, CNN reported.

People are showing photos of the screen and message on social media, USA Today reported. It is a similar message that is sent out when an iPhone owner’s device is stolen and they use the Find My app to locate and disable it. The app also works on Macs, AirPods and Apple Watches, USA Today reported.

Apple was asked to comment, but said it will not speak on “security matters,” BBC News reported.