Unfortunately iPads and iPhones are one of the most stolen electronic devices these days. Besides being stolen, they can be lost at a customers location, at a train depot, bus station, airport, etc. I know this because I misplaced mine last week between appointments. Luckily I knew approximately the time it came up missing and where I was at that time. After retracing my steps, the iPad was found without any issue. However, I was lucky. What if you lost your iPad in an airport or on a plane while traveling, could you describe it with enough detail that a person would be able to locate it in the lost and found?

Beyond the basics of locking the iPad with a password, adding contact information to your home screen, or using iCloud to locate and find your iPad, it might be worthwhile to add some type of uniqueness or theft identification to the iPad so its easily spotted and recovered.

Here are several ways you can add character to your iPad and make it unique.

1) Add a personalized case to the iPad. There are several companies on the Internet that will take a photo, picture, poem, or anything else and create a personalized case.

2) Attach a business card with contact information to the back of your iPad. These could easily be removed by a thief but makes it easier to find in a lost and found. There are companies like Gelaskins that make a vinyl decal with adhesive that works great.

3) Engrave your iPad with personal information. Apple will engrave your iPad when you purchase it directly through them, or you can have a local laser engraver add some distinguishing information to the back of your iPad. There are also several engravers online that will do the engraving.

Many individuals will choose the engraving route, however there are some drawbacks to this option.

1) The engraving is forever. Make sure the information is spelled correctly and if you are adding contact information like an address, well, let’s just hope you don’t move very often. 

2) An engraved iPad means you can’t return it to the store. Interestingly enough, this is one of the reasons Apple pushes the engraving option. Once its engraved, there are no returns or exchanges accepted. Its yours whether you like it or not.

3) The resale value for an engraved iPad goes way, way down. Traditionally Apple products retain a very high resale value. I know customers that purchased an iPad 1, then sold it on eBay for close to what they bought it for and then bought an iPad 2.  Nobody wants “Love, Bobby” etched on the back of an iPad they bought off of eBay, unless of course their significant other is named Bobby.

4) Most iPads, because of their somewhat fragile nature, end up in a case for protection. These cases will cover up the special engraving anyway.

So, whether its putting the iPad in a unique case, engraving the back of it, or attaching information to the back of the iPad, its a good idea to add some unique identification to your new electronic device so its easily spotted and recovered. 

Believe me, you may not think you’ll ever misplace, lose, or have your iPad stolen but chances are you will. So, add some theft identification to your iPad so you can retrieve it quickly when it happens.

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