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Traveler Helps Bust Brussels Theft Ring Thanks to AirTag and Find My App

Traveler Helps Bust Brussels Theft Ring Thanks to AirTag and Find My App

A Canadian man has foiled a European theft ring, after he tracked his stolen MacBook and bag, thanks to an AirTag he’d hidden in the bag and the Find My app on his iPhone.

Former Google AI employee Tony Aube was in Brussels, Belgium, heading to the airport to fly back to Canada on Friday night, had his backpack stolen while he waited at a local train station. Unfortunately for Aube, his MacBook was in the bag.

Aube wasn’t able to pursue the thieves, as he had other luggage with him, but he was able to track the bag and its contents thanks to the hidden AirTag and the Find My app. While the thieves ditched the AirTag, Aube was able to see the location of the MacBook later that night.

While he contacted police, they would not act on the lead, as the location was an apartment house, and the location of the MacBook wasn’t precise enough to determine which apartment contained the MacBook.

The next morning, as he bided his time until he could get a replacement passport (which was apparently in the stolen backpack), Aube saw that his MacBook had moved to a different location, which Aube traveled to.

Aube hung out outside the house at the new location, waiting to see if anyone entered or left the house. After five hours passed, the thieves left the house. Aube smartly decided against confronting them and instead followed them.

(The following video contains profanity.)

Aube followed the thieves for three hours, eventually visiting the first location that appeared on Find My after the theft occurred. The bad guys also visited a computer store where they apparently sold stolen goods.

Aube then sent the additional information and photographs he collected to the police, deciding to return to the house that the computer was in, and once again call the police. When the thieves returned six hours later,  Aube once again called the police, resulting in the arrest of the thieves, as well as the return of his property.

Aube said the thieves belonged to a “huge organized theft network,” that had hundreds of purloined devices in their possession. The thieves had made an effort to try to thwart possible tracking systems by wrapping the devices in aluminum foil.

Aube says that had the thieves not been arrested, he would have possibly attempted to fly his drone into an open window to film and take photographs of the thieves.

(Via AppleInsider)