I recently got my iPhone snatched. Yup, a new one, barely a month old. I initially didn’t want to write anything on this issue because I was too pissed off. RM2,290 is a lot of money and it was one of the few nice things that I owned.
I’ve rerun all the ‘what ifs’ and told the story many times over. So all you need to know is that it got snatched from 2 guys on a motorbike who sneaked up from behind as I was talking on the phone. The execution was clean and simple; and before I realised what was happening, they were fast fading into traffic. I was not even by the side of the road, I was actually walking towards the entrance of an office building. Oh yes, it was only 10.30am in good old Malaysia.
If you own a smartphone (especially the iPhone 4); please be very, very careful. They are in hot demand with waiting lists that stretch for weeks. I paid the price for being nonchalant, for having the ‘it won’t happen to me’ mindset. I hope none of you have to experience what I went through, so here are some pointers that will help you lower your risk of being a snatch thief victim:
- If you’re outdoors and have to make or answer a call, spare a few seconds looking around. People could be watching you and do not have your back to traffic, even if you are almost indoors; as in my case. Pay special attention to motorbikes.
- I was especially vulnerable because I could not retaliate effectively. Weighed down by a laptop and projector that I was carrying; they knew I couldn’t give chase. Trust me, I tried.
- If you wear glasses, be extra careful. As strange as it may sound, they snatched my glasses too possibly so that I could not see the registration plate of the bike. A few guys helped me look for my glasses after the incident but to no avail. Something tells me this was part of the thieves’ strategy. I must applaud them for doing ‘market research’.
- Cover up that Apple logo, because it says ‘take a bite’. I made the mistake of accessorizing my iPhone with a transparent skin with the Apple logo in plain view. Once bitten, twice shy.
- Stay alert. Thieves do this for a living. Imagine how good you are at your job, these guys probably are as good at theirs. They will strike when you least expect it and when you are at your weakest.
Ahhh… and how can I not put this on record?
Police Officer: Ok. You report is done. But the Investigating Officer is busy right now; he will call you in a while.
Me: But… errr… but my phone got snatched.
Police Officer: Oh yeah… errr… you got another number?