Let’s face it; MacBook thefts are frequent. These justifiably priced computers are nothing short of expensive. Over the years, they tend to keep one of the highest resale values. Little wonder MacBooks are one of the most stolen brands of computers.
If someone recently stole your MacBook, you might want to clear the data remotely to avoid multiple losses. Whatever the reason why you might want to clear your MacBook Pro, we’ve got you covered. In this article, I’ll show you how to clear stolen MacBook Pro and why you might want to do that in the first place.
Before that, let’s see if a thief can unravel the password to your MacBook Pro without your help.
Can you unlock a stolen MacBook Pro?
This is a source of concern to most people who recently had their laptops stolen. It becomes even more worrying if you have sensitive data on the computer.
TLDR; yes, a thief can unlock your stolen MacBook Pro to resell it as used, but not necessarily to steal your data.
While there might be ways for the thief to unlock your MacBook Pro with the data intact, they will mostly require your help, and that isn’t what a thief will want to be going through, or is it?
How to clear stolen MacBook Pro
Fortunately, there are ways by which you can remotely delete all your data from your MacBook Pro if it gets stolen.
However, you can only clear a stolen MacBook Pro if you’re logged in with your Apple ID on the computer. If you’re confident that someone stole your MacBook Pro, wiping the computer might be your best bet.
Note that the thief will have to connect to the internet for this to work. If the MacBook Pro stays offline forever, your data remains on the computer.
But then, who uses a MacBook Pro offline forever?
Here are the steps you can take to clear a stolen MacBook Pro with an Apple ID.
- Get any of your devices and head over to the iCloud website. The web address is iCloud.com, and you’ll need to login in using your Apple account details to use this service.
- To remotely clear your MacBook Pro, you’ll need to log into iCloud using the iCloud account on the MacBook Pro.
When you’ve signed in successfully, navigate to ‘Find iPhone’ from the available options.
- ‘Find iPhone’ will list all of the Apple devices that are currently signed in to this iCloud account. Select the lost MacBook Pro from the list to continue.
- If the MacBook Pro is online at that moment, you’ll see the location of the computer. Otherwise, you’ll see a “Notify Me If Found” option that notifies you whenever it comes online.
Never attempt to retrieve your MacBook Pro yourself. Some could be picked up by harmless people trying to help. However, there have been cases where the owners were killed by the robbers.
It’s a better idea to report to the police if you need your MacBook Pro again.
- If finding the MacBook Pro doesn’t matter to you, you can choose the “Erase your Mac” option on the page.
“Erase Your Mac” completely erases every single bit of data on your Mac. This should be a last resort when you have private data on your MacBook Pro, and you don’t care about the computer itself.
Selecting this option also decreases your chances of ever getting your computer back, as it removes your iCloud account from the computer.
How to recover stolen MacBook Pro?
Erasing your MacBook Pro is not a recommended action if your MacBook Pro gets stolen. There are better ways to lock down your MacBook Pro, making it recoverable, at least.
For example, you can ‘Lock Your Mac.’ The ‘Lock Your Mac‘ option is available on the same page as ‘Erase Your Mac’ and is a more economical way to restrict access to sensitive information.
When you remotely lock your MacBook Pro, the thieves will be unable to do anything with your computer. Even if they try to wipe the computer, they’ll be unable to use it for anything productive.
You can display a message on your Mac after locking it down remotely. Your contact details are a perfect way to use this message space.
You can also promise the ‘finders’ some reward for returning the lost computer.
Choose to have the computer mailed to somewhere other than your house, as there are documented cases of thieves tracking down the owners of stolen gadgets.
Apart from locking your MacBook Pro, you can also have your computer play a sound if you’re not sure it’s stolen or misplaced.
How to protect your MacBook Pro from theft
Prevention is better than cure, no doubt. If you have taken some simple preventive measures before your MacBook Pro got stolen, you won’t have to worry about remotely clearing the stolen computer.
It’s usually too late to take action after you’ve lost your computer. If you still have your MacBook Pro with you, here are some things you can do to prevent double losses if it ever gets lost or stolen.
- Turn on FileVault
FileVault is a macOS feature that lets you encrypt your hard drive to prevent unauthorized file access. Without your FileVault password, someone with access to your computer cannot access your files.
Setting up FileVault doesn’t only add an extra layer of security to your data, but it can also help you retrieve your computer’s password if it ever gets lost.
- Sign in to iCloud
Seriously, you cannot remotely clear a stolen MacBook Pro if you’re not previously signed in with your Apple ID.
While you can use your MacBook Pro without the Apple ID, I hope this shows you why doing that is a bad idea. Do the needful, and set up your iCloud. Don’t forget automatic backup, sport.
READ MORE: How To Unlock MacBook Pro Without Password
While you’re not planning to have your MacBook Pro stolen, knowing how to clear stolen MacBook Pro is a good piece of knowledge.
First off, there are some things you have to fix to make it work. If you lose your MacBook Pro before trying to fix these things, you might be a little too late.
Don’t be too late. Learn how to clear and lock your computer now to outsmart the thieves that want a free MacBook Pro.